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156th St. overcrossing officially dedicated
MARYSVILLE — Three months after it opened, and two weeks after it was closed for final tweaks, the 1-5 overcrossing at 156th Street in north Marysville was officially dedicated on Jan. 28.
“As we were setting this date, we joked that the one thing we could be absolutely certain of was that it would be snowing, sleeting, hailing or raining today,” said Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring, as he and his fellow dedication ceremony attendees shivered under tents while rain poured down on the temporarily closed road.
Nehring extended credit for the overcrossing not only to the Marysville City Council and former Mayor Dennis Kendall, as well as contractors Guy F. Atkinson Construction, but also to the city’s partners in funding, from the Tulalip Tribes to the members of the public/private Local Improvement District.
“It’s a testament to what can be done even when state and federal dollars are drying up,” Nehring said, even as he acknowledged that, “Yes, this is designed to become a full interchange, so I hope we’ll be able to apply for federal grants and have senators [Maria] Cantwell and [Patty] Murray, as well as Rep. [Rick] Larsen, see our degree of need.”
Nehring touted the overcrossing as key not only to easing traffic congestion on the I-5 interchange at 172nd Street, but also for further paving the way for a dedicated manufacturing and light industrial center in north Marysville where a great deal of infrastructure has already been established to support such a venture.
“Last November, the manager of the Costco in Lakewood was calling me up and asking to make sure this overcrossing would open on time,” Nehring said. “Sure enough, it was finished in time for ‘Black Friday’ shopping right after Thanksgiving. It just needed to be closed these past two weeks for a few final touches to be added.”
Brandon Dully of Atkinson Construction shared a laugh with Nehring under the tent about the day’s downpour.
“This is just a normal Marysville day for us,” Dully said. “Most of our jobs north of Everett are in weather like this, but we’re up to the challenge.”
Dully proudly touted Atkinson’s safety record on the site by pointing out that only “two very minor accidents” occurred during the project.
“One of the best parts of this job is that we were able to support local labor by giving jobs to guys just down the road,” Dully said. “Just let us know when we need to put on- and off-ramps on this thing, and we’ll be back.”
Nehring concluded the ceremony by crediting the decision to go with an overcrossing to a committee made up of area residents and various governmental organizations.
“Marysville didn’t just dream this up in a vacuum all by ourselves,” Nehring said. “We were committed to the best alternative possible.”