The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) has repored that contrators have opened State Route 401 between the Astoria-Megler Bridge and Naselle two weeks earlier than expected.
The department closed the road on February 2 after discovering threatening signs of a massive landslide near Megler. The department signed an emergency contract with Tapani Underground Inc. of Battle Ground, whose crews worked seven days a week to excavate more than 2,000 dump-truck loads of dirt, rocks and debris.
Crews increased progress significantly by bringing in extra equipment and working around the clock.
Once the bottom portion of the hillside was stable enough, crews moved equipment onto the slope and started excavating from the top, the department reported. This helped increase the amount of soile removed each day from 800 cubic yards to 4,000 cubic yards.
Drivers can expect single-lane traffic from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily while crews complete final stabilization and erosion control work. Flaggers will direct traffic through the work zone.
Both lanes of SR 401 will be open nightly from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m.. Work is expected to be completed by the end of February.
The $700,000 project is funded through state dollars.