This fall, WSDOT will remove traffic lights on SR 500 at Northeast Falk Road/Northeast 42nd Avenue and Northeast 54th Avenue/Northeast Stapleton Road in Vancouver, and install a barrier in the middle of the highway, to address safety and crash concerns for vehicles. We applaud that these changes are predicted to reduce the number of collisions at or near the intersections by up to 70 percent.
For travelers using sidewalks or bicycle facilities, immediate improvements will remove the ability to cross SR 500 at NE 54th Ave/ NE Stapleton Ave until the grade-separated crossing can be designed and constructed. Funding has not yet been identified for a near-term project that will provide a solution to this problem, and people who don't have access to a vehicle to make the 2+ mile detour are increasingly concerned about the potential safety impacts for system users. It is also likely that safety issues will increase for people walking and rolling because neighborhood routes will be impacted by higher traffic patterns as drivers will seek out detours through neighborhoods that are not accustomed to commuter traffic.
We have grave concerns about the transportation injustices and inequities of this project, and are tracking this project closely.
Learn more about this project and provide feedback to WSDOT.