KENNEWICK, WA - If you have been driving around, you may have noticed many construction trucks in and around the Southridge area in Kennewick.
It's the US 395 Ridgeline Interchange Project that started construction in April 2021. The $21M project is one of the biggest projects the City of Kennewick has had in a while.
Every time you fill up at the pump with gas, you pay tax dollars.
"And sometimes people wonder, 'Hey, do we ever get any of those dollars back in the community?' And this is one of those projects, the bulk of this project, that is being paid by those tax dollars that we pay at that pump that goes to the state and come back to projects around the state and we got lucky to get this one finance as well," Evelyn Lusignan, the spokesperson with the City of Kennewick said.
She said this project will create an undercrossing of US 395 and open up the growing area to new development.
"Well our Southridge is a huge growth area in the City of Kennewick, lots of new housing, lots of new businesses are moving into that area and we really needed another access point for that growth," she said.
If you are wondering what is being built on Bofer Canyon Road, you are not alone. She said it is a detour road.
"While the interchange, the underpass, the underchange being excuvated, we need to detour traffic off of 395. So, they may be thinking is that going to be permanently how the highway is going to go. No. That's just going to be a detour route," Lusignan said.
In partnership with the Washington State Department of Transportation, an underpass interchange was chosen for this location. The project also includes things like on and off ramps, an additional northbound US 395 lane from Ridgeline to North of Hildebrand and new turning lanes are all hour parts of the US 395/Hilderand Intersection.
"And when it is all done, like anything, I think our community will really sees the benefit that the construction brought to the community," she said.
City officials expect to have the project completed in Fall 2022.
They have a page devoted to the current project and future project. Click here to see things like what the status of each city project is, who pays for it and the expected completion dates.