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County holds ribbon cutting for Old Hwy 99 overpass

January 25, 2019
A train interrupts guest speaker Pat Hulcey, a Fife City Councilman, before a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday to officially open the new railroad overpass on Old Highway 99 north of Burlington.

Skagit County held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday to commemorate the new railroad overpass on Old Highway 99 north of Burlington.

Construction on the concrete and steel structure began in March 2017, and the road was closed from May 2017 to Nov. 30, 2018.

This overpass replaced the original wooden overpass built in 1936, which was ranked as one of the five least safe bridges in the state, County Engineer Paul Randall-Gruter said before the project began.

The new overpass is wider and has sidewalks to accommodate bicyclists and pedestrians, said Dan Berentson, director of county Public Works.

With the project nearly completed, the final cost is about $16 million, said Project Manager Jennifer Swanson.

The contractor, Cascade Bridge, came in at about $3 million under its estimate, she said.

Some painting and finishing work on the concrete still needs to be completed, Swanson said.

The county was awarded $17.4 million in grants for the project: $12 million in federal grants, $4 million from the state, $500,000 from the county and $900,000 from the Upper Skagit Indian Tribe.

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