Plans to build a casino, resort, and tribal center would have led to increased traffic volumes on surrounding roadways and on the NW La Center Road/I-5 interchange in La Center, Washington, causing the interchange to be under capacity and therefore unsafe and inefficient.
Working with the Cowlitz Tribe, the Washington Department of Transportation (WSDOT), and the City of La Center, Kittelson led a multidisciplinary team that planned, designed, and constructed a new interchange and modified the nearby roadway network. Our team’s design incorporated a new interchange bridge with modified ramps and roundabout controlled terminals, as well as significant ped/bike improvements and multi-use pathways. The project team also realigned approximately two miles of local roadways to improve safety and circulation, and to meet WSDOT’s access management requirements for crossroads.
A New Freeway Interchange in Just 10 Months
An open and collaborative planning and design process led to constructed improvements that support long-term traffic demands and pedestrian/bicycle activities. The improvements have also resulted in lower maintenance costs, improved aesthetics, a gateway to the City of La Center and Cowlitz Reservation, and better safety for the traveling public.
This project won two awards in 2018: the Daily Journal of Commerce (DJC) Oregon TopProject award (transportation category) for excellence in the region’s built environment, and the American Public Works Association (APWA) Washington Chapter Project of the Year award (transportation category, $25-75 million division) for excellence in the delivery of a public works project that has a profound impact on the community.