Round-the-clock closures on US 2 this weekend to replace “Swiss cheese” culverts

 By guest blogger
Erica Taylor

After 40 years of service, the culverts that run under US 2 near Snohomish are so corroded, maintenance crews say they look like Swiss cheese. It’s time to replace the old steel culverts with thick, durable, rubberized plastic pipes that will reduce long-term maintenance needs and costs. Though they’re invisible from the roadway, the culverts are a very important part of the highway drainage system – leaky culverts can lead to potholes, bumps, cracks and potentially sinkholes.

Crew perform prep work for culvert removal
and installation underneath US 2.
So, what do Swiss cheese culverts mean for your travels? If you’re planning to take eastbound US 2 in Snohomish this weekend, allow some time for detours.

Crews will cut open the highway and dig underneath to remove the old culverts and install the new ones (see video below). That means a weekend-long closure of eastbound US 2, from 20th Street SE to Bickford Avenue. Lanes will close at 10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 3, and won’t reopen until 5 a.m. Monday, Aug. 6. This weekend is just the first of six directional closures on US 2 between now and October. During closures, we’ll post a detour along SR 9 and 20th Street SE. The detour will add 10 to 15 minutes to most trips, but if you’re traveling Saturday or Sunday afternoon, plan to add at least 20 minutes extra travel time.

Visit our project Web page for up-to-date information and closure schedules. Keep up with construction in Snohomish County by signing up for email updates and bookmarking the construction update page.