Traffic Q&A: Repair work on Gig Harbor overpass likely to begin in July

Staff writerMay 25, 2014 

Q: What’s going on with fixing that banged-up overpass on state Route 16 in Gig Harbor that got hit by a truck last year? It looks like it could start dropping concrete chunks onto the freeway any day now. — John, Gig Harbor

A: That would be the Olympic Drive overpass, which was struck by an oversize load in March 2013. The damage is almost exactly the same as what happened when the overpass was struck in a similar accident in January 2011.

The overpass is not about to drop chunks of concrete, according to the Washington State Department of Transportation, but it does need fixing. The concrete girder spanning the westbound lanes of state Route 16 was so badly damaged in the crash that it will have to be replaced. Again.

WSDOT has awarded the repair contract (just short of $1 million) to Massana Construction of Gig Harbor.

“We expect the contractor to be working between July and October,” said WSDOT spokeswoman Claudia Bingham Baker. “It probably won’t be much sooner than that because it’ll take time to have the girder fabricated.”

This time around, Bingham Baker said, the contract involves taking some extra precautions to reduce the chance of the overpass being hit a third time. They’ll restripe and move all westbound state Route 16 lanes to the right, which will gain 3 inches of vertical clearance.

Rob Carson: 253-597-8693; rob.carson@thenewstribune.com

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