Community News

deception pass bridge

A contractor for the state Transportation Dept. will spend much of this year and next year repairing and repainting the two bridges at Deception Pass. 

While there will be minimal effects on daytime traffic, Whidbey Island neighbors and Deception Pass State Park visitors will want to carefully plan their evening trips through this area.

On May 6, Washington State Department of Transportation contractor crews with Eagle Industrial Painting, LLC, will begin a two-year repainting and repair project on these two iconic structures that connect Whidbey Island to the rest of Washington State. 

The two bridges last received a fresh coat more than 20 years ago. In the years since, saltwater and sun exposure corroded some areas of the bridges. Left untreated, it could weaken the bridges over time.

“More than 18,000 people rely on these bridges every day as the only land access on and off Whidbey Island,” said WSDOT Project Engineer Shane Spahr. “This new paint, along with the removal and replacement of the corroded sections, will help protect the steel from the elements for decades.”

Crews will work day and night to complete this project in two years. Day shifts are scheduled to begin two hours after sunrise, Monday through Saturday. This is when crews will perform the noisiest work, like sandblasting, vacuuming and painting. Most of this work will take place under the bridges, allowing all lanes of SR 20 to remain open during the day.

During the night shift, crews will deliver materials and equipment for the following day and reduce SR 20 to a single lane with alternating traffic. Lane reductions will happen Saturdays through Thursdays from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly, which means late night travelers should plan for delays.

Crews will work through the winter, weather permitting, and expect to wrap up this $22.6 million project in fall 2020. 

Park visitors can still enjoy the bridges during construction, but should expect loud construction noise during the day and some noise overnight.

Available parking near Deception Pass and Canoe Pass bridges will also be limited as crews stage equipment along SR 20.