BATTLE GROUND — Two state highways intersect within the city of Battle Ground; east-westbound SR-502 is the city’s Main Street and north-southbound SR-503 is 10th Avenue in the city. As the population of the city and the larger north Clark County region has increased, so has traffic and related congestion at and around the intersection.
The number of vehicles traveling through the city has doubled in the last 20 years. Over 50,000 motorists pass through the SR-502/503 intersection each day, many experiencing gridlock.
This year, the city begins construction on the first phase of the SR-502/503 Congestion Relief Project, a multi-year 3-phase project designed to create a more efficient transportation system by addressing factors contributing to gridlock.
Phase-1 construction addresses specific points of congestion near the Fred Meyer shopping center located at the northwest corner of SR-502/503. In 1999, a traffic signal was installed at NW 12th Avenue and Main Street leading into the then-new Fred Meyer. At that time, officials from the city of Battle Ground, WSDOT and Fred Meyer acknowledged and agreed that the signal, with its close proximity to the intersection, would one day contribute to congestion, need to be removed, and an additional access point to the shopping center be constructed.
That day has arrived. This summer, NW 5th Way, located just north of Fred Meyer will be extended east to connect to SR-503, providing an additional right-in and right-out access point to and from the shopping center. Once NW 5th Way is open for use, the NW 12th Ave/Main St traffic signal will be removed and a median installed on Main St to restrict traffic on NW 12th Ave to right-in and right-out access only. A third component of phase 1 will extend the left-turn lane on NW 15th Ave to add capacity for vehicles turning east onto Main St.
Detailed project information with a map indicating the upcoming traffic revisions is available at www.cityofbg.org/congestion-relief. An informational open house will be held on Wed., July 19 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Battle Ground Fred Meyer (east entrance) located at 401 NW 12th Ave. City staff will be on hand to answer any questions and will have project details and maps available.
Future phases 2 and 3 of the larger congestion relief project include construction of turn lanes at the SR-502/503 intersection so that each leg of the intersection has a dedicated right-hand turn lane, and the addition of an east-west connector street north of Main Street between SR-503 and North Parkway.
The entire 3-phase SR-502/503 Congestion Relief Project, estimated at $7.7 million, will be funded by the state’s Connecting Washington program.
Information courtesy of city of Battle Ground.