Nile Valley landslide cleaned up, and road reopened - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Nile Valley landslide cleaned up, and road reopened

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NILE VALLEY, Wash.-- A stretch of State Route 410 in the Nile Valley is now open again, three years after a massive landslide destroyed a portion of the highway in 2009.

Dozens of Nile Valley locals, construction workers, and even state representatives gathered for the ribbon cutting event Thursday morning.

For three years people traveling along SR 410 between Naches and Chinook Pass had to take a long, winding detour around a devastating landslide that destroyed homes and disrupted lives. But not anymore.

"In order to work as fast as we did, to work with all the different entities... that was, really wasn't a challenge because everybody was on board, trying to make this thing, get it open as quickly as we could," said Bill Preston, the DOT engineer working on the project.

State and federal emergency relief money was used for the project. Around $8.7 million, which was about $1 million less then they originally planned.

And for the people living in the Nile Valley, it's a project that finished earlier than expected, and provides a new road and a return to normal routines.

"You just had to get used to it. You had to allocate the time to drive down to get down to the Wood Shed, and then hit the highway and go on into town," said Dean Govreau, a Nile Valley resident.

The landslide moved about 80 acres of land, destroyed at least 30 homes, and even forced crews to re-route the Naches River after it was blocked by the slide.

But now, those problems are in the rear view mirror for hundreds of people who now have their road back.

"It's just great to have, know that this access is here and such a nice road, safe," said Govreau.

Because the project did come in a million dollars under budget, the DOT will return that excess money to the federal emergency relief fund, so it can go to help others around the country when they need it most.

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