This summer’s Highway 166 paving project

The in basket: Don Brandvold reminds me that in the spring of 2006, he asked about the water coming up in the road (Highway 166) in front of the Dockside marina. “After checking, you wrote back that it was scheduled to be fixed in the summer of 2007,” he said.
“Well, here it is spring of 2008 and still nothing has been done.  Could you check with them again?”
The out basket: That’s what I wrote, alright, though I don’t recall why. I most recently was of the belief that the project would be done in conjunction with the 2009 widening of Sedgwick Road near Bethel Avenue.
It turns out neither is correct. The Highway 166 paving from near Gorst to Westbay will be done this summer.
Brenden Clarke, whose project engineering office in South Kitsap is planning the paving project, says it will be done at night in July and August. The highway will get a new layer of asphalt from its intersection with Highway 16 near Gorst and Westbay in Port Orchard.
State maintenance crews will try to reduce the seepage at the spot Don mentions by regrading the ditch on the south side of the highway, Brenden says.
The water doesn’t run out of the ditch but comes up through the pavement, so that will work only if the regrading somehow reduces the underground water pressure. If that doesn’t get the job done, Brenden said, “we will go from there.” I guess that means they’ll try something else, possibly before the paving.
It’s not much of a problem, and is just one of many places water finds itself onto a highway, but it does present a skidding danger when it freezes.
Brenden tells me they recently did core samples at the highway’s intersection with Sidney Avenue in downtown Port Orchard to make sure the project won’t destroy any artifacts, Indian or otherwise. That could happen when they excavate there to replace the wire-suspended traffic signals with pole mounted ones. They didn’t find any signs of artifacts, he said.
Mindful of the major collapse of the highway 10 or 15 years ago just west of Ross Point, I asked Brenden how they plan to address the two minor slumps that exist today within a half mile of that spot on each side of it. He said they will just pave over them. I recall that successive layers of asphalt laid over the years from similar projects were exposed when the highway gave way back then and dropped toward the beach.
Brenden said it would take a major storm event to duplicate that at either of the existing depressions, so they won’t spend the hundreds of thousands of dollars needed to firm up whatever is slowly giving way underground there.

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