Seven miles of state Highway 112 to be repaved in 2025

Asphalt overlay, guardrails, signage needed, DOT says

PORT ANGELES — A portion of state Highway 112 is set for preservation and maintenance work to address the worst part of the roadway, Steve Roark, the Olympic Region administrator of the state Department of Transportation, told the Clallam County commissioners.

“Right now, we think it’s best to do preservation and maintenance on the worst portion of that route, which is milepost 0 to milepost 7 or 8, and some other spot improvements along the corridor,” Roark said told commissioners during their Monday work session.

Forty-two miles of the roadway need pavement repair, drainage and roadside safety hardware improvements, according to Roark’s presentation. DOT has received $9.7 million to address the worst of the roadway for now.

Addressing the entire roadway could cost as much as $80 million, he said.

DOT spokeswoman Cara Mitchell said Thursday that the project still is in the design stage and will occur sometime in 2025.

“We’ve been scoping this work and doing some outreach,” Roark said. “So right now that has gone to design and we will continue to fine-tune the scope of work.”

Commissioner Randy Johnson noted the highway is the only way in or out for the Makah reservation and asked about the timeline.

“I’m sure you are speaking with them, but I’m just curious,” Johnson said. “It’s a very difficult road. I get that. And it probably needs more than the $9 million or $10 million that you said. But can you tell us more about that particular project?”

Roark said DOT officials talked to the Makah Tribal Council about where the most challenging parts of the road were and then he drove it himself.

“So, I drove out there so I could experience it in person,” Roark said. “That section from milepost zero to seven, you have pavement, asphalt, and it’s in bad condition. It’s in poor condition.

“So our design team really is focusing on that area, from milepost zero to seven. And that’s probably the best use of that money. And that’s about as much as you can do,” he said.

The roadway needs asphalt overlay, guardrails, signage and maybe some drainage work, Roark said.

“And if we were to get another $10 million, I think there’s some sections along the Hoko (River) and up toward Clallam Bay that could use investment next,” he said.

Roark also addressed the Elwha River bridge project, saying “the most impactful” piece is coming this summer, after Memorial Day, when traffic will be detoured for up to nine days so new bridge approaches can be built.

“We’re hopeful it might be less than that,” Roark said. “There’s a lot of work that needs to be done to those approaches to the new bridge. So that’s going to get underway I’m guessing sometime in June, and we’ll work hard to get the word out when we know the exact dates.”

Forks City Attorney Rod Fleck said he was asked to tell DOT to keep the Forks High School graduation on their radar screen.

“We have a fairly good period when U.S. 101 will be alternating one-way traffic,” Roark said. “We are predicting significant backups. We still are working with our contractor.

“I am very hopeful that we will drive down the number of days necessary to very few or perhaps none.”


Reporter Brian Gawley can be reached by email at

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