Warren Avenue Bridge railings to be raised, and other jobs

The in basket: While I was visiting with State Project Engineer Jeff Cook and his assistant, Andy Larson recently, researching a column on Manette Bridge access, I learned of a couple of state projects I either had no idea were coming, or about which I lacked the most current information.

The out basket: As early as the week of Oct. 4, drivers on the Warren Avenue Bridge in Bremerton at night will find work under way to raise both the inside and outside railings on the bridge.

The railings will be the same height and both will be taller than they are now when the 42-working-day project is complete, they said.

The work will be done at night, to minimize complications from the fact that the Manette Bridge is subject to intermittent closures while its replacement is built.

“The barrier replacement is part of a larger effort to bring traffic barrier up to current standards,” Jeff said.

He also tells me work is progressing on putting nine cameras and three Highway Advisory Radio systems along Highway 3 between Poulsbo and the Hood Canal Bridge. When finished, people at home or with wi-fi in their vehicle will be able to see or hear whether traffic is backed up and how far should the bridge be closed to traffic.

Lastly, Andy and Jeff filled me in on next year’s cliff stabilization work, which they call “rock scaling,” on Highway 3 between Gorst and Bremerton.

Loose rock will be pried out by pry bars or via big air bags that will push the rock out when inflated, they said. They are similar to the air bags that lift collapsed slabs of buildings to rescue trapped people, Jeff said.

Andy said dowels will be inserted into other more stable rock to hold it in place as well as the metal curtain that will be draped over the cliff to  further prevent falling rock from getting into traffic. Similar screen can be seen on cliffs in Snoqualmie Pass and down by Aberdeen.

Sections of the center concrete barrier dividing the highway below the cliffs  will be removed and traffic moved toward the railroad tracks during the work, Andy said.

4 thoughts on “Warren Avenue Bridge railings to be raised, and other jobs

  1. It appears the upgrade to the bridge is to install new barriers that are 4″ taller than the old? Seems a collosal waste of money when the budget is supposedly so tight. The money could have been spent to repair the bridge deck. It’s projects like this that make me believe the wailing for more taxes is unfounded, and the state has a surplus. Go look at all the shovel leaners on any road project.

  2. “The barrier replacement is part of a larger effort to bring traffic barrier up to current standards,” Jeff said.

    I agree with Gary. This seems to be a waste of money. It is needed to bring the traffic barrier up to current standards? One has to wonder if some of those heaping regulation (current standards) on the American budget aren’t doing so with half-a-mind to bankrupt the country.

  3. I agree with Gary. A 1.2 Million dollar project to raise the barrier 4 inches? Did anyone think about installing a pre-cast 4inch cap on the existing barrier? The work could have been done during regular shift times and saved a lot of traffic control. By the way, we get nothing for traffic control only the expense. The Bridge deck is badly in need of repair. The deck will only get worse with every winter and start corroding the superstructure. Does anyone remember what happened in Minneapolis?

  4. I have to agree with all the above. What a collossal waste of money. It goes right up there with the West Seattle bridge project of the installation of a million dollar fence. I could fence the King ranch in Texas with that money. And the bridge deck is literally coming apart at the seams. After the winter that we’re supposed to have this year, I can only guess how bad it will get. I would love to see the specs for repairs and additions. I go to work at 0300 and just love to see these guys standing around doing what????

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