IN THE NEWS: New Benton City roundabout celebrated today, officials joined WSDOT in ribbon-cutting event

BENTON CITY – State Sen. Curtis King, Acting Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar and Benton City Mayor Linda Lehman celebrated with residents today, Monday, June 13, the opening of a new roundabout along Interstate 82 in Benton City.

The roundabout is the first of many Connecting Washington projects to be completed, bringing safety, economic, environmental and mobility improvements to local areas and throughout the state.

“I was here a few months ago breaking ground and I’m honored to be back as the project comes full circle and we celebrate completion,” said Sen. Curtis King. “The 2015 Connecting Washington transportation package helps every corner of the state.”

Hosted by the Washington State Department of Transportation, the ceremony marked a milestone with the opening of the new roundabout; this is the first of two construction phases for the Red Mountain Interchange Improvements. The project will be complete at the end of June. A small amount of paving, striping and landscaping remains.

Adjacent to I-82, this first phase of planned improvements replaced the State Route 224/State Route 225 intersection with a roundabout, relocated a park and ride lot and improved street lighting and sidewalks in the area. The new roundabout reduces congestion and improves access to Benton City and the Red Mountain area, which is vital to expanding the economic vitality of the region.

Contractor crews began work in December 2015. The total budget for the Red Mountain Interchange Improvements is $30 million, with $4.3 million allocated for this first phase roundabout project.