Rest areas on Highway 16 not likely

The in basket: After a recent Road Warrior column discussed the scant use of the weigh stations on Highway 16, the highway to and from Tacoma, Bert Gegner  suggested that they be turned into rest areas, which seems to be their main function these days. But there are no restrooms or other amenities.

I asked the state how it decides where rest areas are created.

The out basket: Claudia Bingham-Baker of the Olympic Region of state highways, says, “We choose rest area locations based on federal guidelines that recommend siting rest areas approximately every 60 miles if no other traveler services are available. Traveler services include local services such as restaurants, gas stations, etc. that allow travelers the opportunity to stop and rest.

“Along SR 16 there are many traveler services available, so it is unlikely WSDOT would site a rest area along that highway.

“Many of our rest areas used to be in more rural areas but over the years development has caught up to them.

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