Queensgate ramp to close for weekend to prep for roundabout construction

Drivers can expect delays with the closure of the eastbound on-ramp at the Queensgate Drive and Interstate 182 interchange this weekend in Richland.

The closure is from 8 p.m. Friday, May 18, through 5 a.m. Monday, May 21.

A detour will be in place directing drivers to Columbia Park Trail and then to the Highway 240 interchange at Steptoe Street.

During the weekend closure, traffic will be flagged though the intersection of the Queensgate and I-182 ramps as crews remove the signal system and install a paved detour around the intersection.

The weekend roadwork will set into motion the plan for two new roundabouts — one at the I-182 interchange and the other at Columbia Park Trail.

After the weekend closure, traffic will be detoured around the work zone 24 hours a day, seven days a week, through July 30.

Northbound traffic on Queensgate will be directed to the I-182 eastbound on-ramp with a right turn only. Traffic heading south toward Duportail Street will be detoured to the Keene Road and Duportail Street intersection; drivers won’t be able to turn left onto the highway.

The two roundabouts will be built in tandem, but they will not be the same “teardrop” style found in Kennewick where a double roundabout controls the flow of traffic between highways 395 and 240 and Columbia Drive.

There will be a straightaway between the two traffic circles for a more traditional use compared to Kennewick’s complex setup.

The project also will widen Queensgate Drive to four lanes between Keene and the freeway, with two lanes in each direction and a curbed center turn median.

The southernmost roundabout on Queensgate will extend Columbia Park Trail to the west, connecting it with Jericho Court, north of Tri-Cities Battery and Auto Repair. There is currently no intersection at this section of Queensgate, and the road sees frequent backups in the morning and evening rush as traffic bottlenecks along Queensgate.

For updates about the project, including a live camera feed, visit https://www.ci.richland.wa.us/departments/public-works/capital-projects/queensgate-corridor-improvements.

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