SR 17 repaving begins April 1 in Moses Lake

Mar. 12—MOSES LAKE — Construction begins April 1 on a project to resurface a seven-mile section of State Route 17 through Moses Lake.

Road crews will be shaving off and replacing the top two inches of asphalt, said Jeff Deal, the engineer on the project for the Washington Department of Transportation. Most of the time crews will be working from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Working overnight makes it easier on drivers and road crews alike, he said.

"That is a big factor. The impacts we're going to have going through town make this job — I wouldn't say impossible to do during the day, but it would be much more impactful to the public if we went during the day. Plus, that many cars going by our work crews — it's just safer for our work crews," Deal said.

Traffic will be restricted when crews are working.

"Travelers will encounter single-lane closures with flagger-controlled zones at signals," wrote Sebastian Moraga, WSDOT public information officer, in a press release.

The work will include the entire four-lane section of SR 17 through town, starting at the Patton Boulevard intersection and going south to the Interstate 90 intersection. Deal said daily traffic in that section is the equivalent of about 15,000 to 16,000 vehicle trips.

The total project cost is about $7.6 million, Moraga wrote. Construction is scheduled to last through the end of July at the latest, the equivalent of 70 working days. Central Washington Asphalt is the contractor.

Originally the project was scheduled for 2023, but it was pushed back a year because the DOT had a lot to do in Central Washington last year.

Detours will be in place at the SR 17 intersection with I-90 and at Stratford Road, Deal said.

The work also includes upgrades to sidewalk ramps at intersections through that section, to better comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act. No new sidewalk will be built.

A roundabout is scheduled for construction at the intersection of SR 17 and Yonezawa Boulevard at some time, but it's not part of this project. Deal said because the roundabout is still a work in progress, construction at Yonezawa will be confined to a new road surface.

"Right now, we are skipping upgrades at the intersection," Deal said.

Even with a roundabout to be built eventually, the intersection does need some attention now.

"I think the pavement in that area is deteriorating bad enough that, even if they come back in a couple of years and (build a roundabout), we're going to want to pave it," he said. "We're going to go essentially from edge line to edge line. We're not going to upgrade any of the ADA ramps — we're exempting that intersection because of the plan — but we're still going to touch the surface. Just to make sure all those potholes get filled."

A roundabout was installed at SR 17 and Grape Drive in 2022, and that intersection is still in good condition.

"We will stop at that pavement break, and skip right over that intersection and pick right up at the next pavement break," he said.

Cheryl Schweizer may be reached via email at

Construction notes:

Total project cost: About $7.6 million

Timeline: April 1 to July 2024

Hours: 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

The work on SR 17 is one of three major WSDOT projects in Grant County in 2024.

Crews are also removing loose rock from the cliff face SR 17 from Soap Lake to the Lake Lenore Caves. Completion is expected by early August.

The I-90 Vantage Bridge is in the first year of a multiyear project to replace the aging bridge deck. The work will require closing one lane Monday through Friday until the end of May, when one lane will be closed seven days a week except on holiday weekends.