Long-awaited U.S. 101 widening project must wait longer: 2011

OLYMPIA — The actual construction in the widening of U.S. Highway 101 to four lanes between Kitchen-Dick and Shore roads isn’t expected to start until July 2011, state Rep. Lynn Kessler says.

It won’t be finished until fall 2013.

The work, which is on the state’s project list for the 2009-2011 biennium, is on schedule, according to Kessler, D-Hoquiam, one of three state legislators representing the North Olympic Peninsula.

“There’s things to do in 2008 and 2009, but construction doesn’t start until 2011,” Kessler said Thursday.

“The dates haven’t changed. There’s processes they must go through.

“They’ll finish the engineering work in July, then start the environmental work, then purchase rights of way, then advertise for bids, then begin construction.”

The long-sought project — which was dropped from the 2005 transportation budget at the last minute then reinstated in 2006 — will widen 2.5 miles of highway between Port Angeles and Sequim that has been the scene of several numerous serious collisions.

The widening of the highway will require relocating the U.S. Fish and Wildlife offices, equipment storage and maintenance shop along U.S. Highway 101 to a five-acre parcel along Holgerson Road in Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge.

The current Fish and Wildlife complex is in the project’s right of way and will be demolished.

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