LACEY – People who travel on northbound Interstate 5 in Nisqually should plan for two weekends of significant delays due to around-the-clock lane closures.

The work scheduled June 7-10 and June 14-17 will allow contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation to repair and replace deteriorating concrete about a half-mile after the Nisqually River Bridge. WSDOT officials said repairing this section of road will create a smoother transition between the highway and the bridge.

“This preservation work will help keep I-5 reliable for people who use it each day,” said WSDOT Project Engineer Chuck Meade. “Doing the job right takes time on the road, and we need help from the traveling public to reduce backups in the area.”    

Since there are no convenient detours through the area, travelers need to plan ahead, and expect lengthy delays. Drivers are advised to:

• Travel before 9 a.m. or after 9 p.m.

• Postpone or cancel discretionary trips.

• Allow lots of extra time for travel.

• Consider using transit or carpooling.

From 10 p.m. Friday to 4 a.m. Monday, June 7-10 and June 14-17 two of the three lanes will remain open. The two open lanes will be narrower than usual with a reduced speed limit of 35 mph.

WSDOT officials determined weekends as they best time to make these repairs. "Although busy, the number of travelers during the weekends is lower than weekday commutes. Crews need the entire weekend to remove and replace worn elements of the bridge, including 12 hours without vehicle traffic so the concrete can cure and strengthen."

People traveling through may notice periods of little or no activity in the closed lanes while this takes place. 

This work is part of a $2.6 million project to repave sections of I-5 between Olympia and Tacoma.

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