SR 104 - Paradise Bay - Shine Road - Intersection Safety Improvement

Project News

  • Over the last year, WSDOT conducted a formal analysis called an Intersection Control Evaluation on the State Route 104 and Shine Road/Paradise Bay intersection in Jefferson County just west of the Hood Canal Bridge. The recently completed analysis considered safety needs, operational efficiencies and area traffic volumes with the goal of identifying improvements for the traveling public. The study recommendation was to build a single-lane, metered roundabout at the intersection during the 2021-2023 biennium.

History

The intersection of State Route 104 and Shine-Paradise Bay Roads in Jefferson County has a history of serious-injury collisions. This potential safety improvement project allows for Shine Road and Paradise Bay travelers to safely enter SR 104 through a single-lane, metered roundabout while promoting a continuous flow of traffic. With nearly 17,000 vehicles driving on SR 104 per day, including oversized loads that travel this corridor to and from the Olympic Peninsula, WSDOT decided the intersection needed a closer look.

We don’t believe restricting access from Paradise Bay and Shine Roads on SR 104 is the right solution. Doing this would increase backups on other routes, potentially affecting smaller communities in a negative manner. We believe the right approach is equitable access for Shine and Paradise Bay travelers by way of a metered roundabout, which can control highway traffic when necessary to let traffic on the side streets safely enter the roundabout.

Oversized loads and semis will also be taken into account. The final design recommendations will include splitter islands and truck aprons with rolled-curbing to help large loads maneuver through the roundabout, similar to the industrial designs we constructed last summer at SR 20 and Sharpes Corner in Anacortes.

 

Analysis

In February 2019, WSDOT published an Intersection Control Evaluation (ICE) report that analyzed traffic volumes and movement, safety considerations and operational efficiencies. The study recommended a single-lane, metered roundabout be built during the 2021-2023 biennium to improve the flow of traffic and reduce the potential and severity of head-on or t-bone-type collisions.

WSDOT considered traffic counts during both bridge openings and during normal operational periods. After a drawspan opening, we see vehicles backed up for miles on both sides of the SR 104 Hood Canal Bridge. While by law we must accommodate marine traffic, we understand the inconvenience this poses to motorists. Traffic counts were used in our traffic modeling (which include a line or queue analysis) for both bridge closure and normal travel conditions at the intersection. With a signal, the line (or queue) of the worst leg of the intersection (which was on the bridge itself) was 227 feet. With a roundabout, the queue, which is classified as “rolling queue” was 183 feet long. This fact is in part why a signal was ruled out as the best solution.

Many have asked about installing a “SMART” signal like what is currently in place on the east end of the SR 104 Hood Canal Bridge. The traffic using the signal at State Route 3 and 104 in Kitsap County already exceeds the signal’s capacity during peak periods. An interconnected, or “SMART” signal system works optimally when signals are spaced no more than a half-mile apart. Beyond a half-mile, which would be the case at the bridge, the efficiency of interconnected signals decreases. Also, signals do not reduce the potential of head-on collisions like roundabouts do. For these reasons, a signal was deemed not the best solution.
 

Needs & benefits

Studies have shown that roundabouts are safer than a traditional stop sign or signal-controlled intersection. Roundabouts: 

  • Promote lower travel speeds and continous traffic flow. Roundabouts force drivers to slow down and allow them to safely continue on their journey with less delay when compared to a signal. 
  • Are designed to accommodate the largest legal loads, including semis.
  • Reduce the potential for head-on or t-bone type collisions.
  • Are more environmentally-friendly than signals. Roundabouts have a smaller carbon footprint and produce less "hot spots."

A metered roundabout, which works just like a traffic signal, will help alleviate congestion on Shine and Paradise Bay Roads during peak times and during SR 104 Hood Canal Bridge openings to mariner traffic.

WSDOT has $3.8 million budgeted for a safety improvement project at this intersection. Ideas such has an overpass or other highway capacity improvements would be substantially more expensive. Such an improvement is not funded at this time

Timeline

  • Intersection Control Evaluation published: Feb. 2019
  • Public Open House: Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019 | 4-6 p.m. | Port Ludlow Maintenance Commission Beach Club | 121 Marina View Drive, Port Ludlow, WA 98365
  • Summer 2019: Further community engagement and open house
  • Anticipated design start: 2019-2021 biennium
  • Anticipated construction start: 2021-2023 biennium
  • Project open to traffic: Fall 2023

Funding

Budgeted: $3.8 million

*Project costs will be available after competitive bidding results in an awarded contract.

 

Contact

Tina Werner 

WSDOT Olympic Communications 

360-704-3270

SR 104 Shine Road - Project area thumbnail