New county road open in Novelty Hill area

  • Written by Valley View Staff

195th Avenue NE to ease congestion, improve connections and safety

After two years of construction, King County Road Services has opened a new connection just south of Novelty Hill Road, a final segment expected to ease congestion, improve reliability and better link residential areas with the Redmond, Bellevue and Seattle economic centers.
“Opening up this connector road gives an alternative to waiting in traffic at the Avondale intersection, easing congestion for thousands of commuters each day,” said Brenda Bauer, Road Services Division manager. “We appreciate the community’s patience as we completed this important work – which is notably five months ahead of schedule and within budget.”

Since December, drivers have traveled through new county roundabouts built on Novelty Hill and Union Hill roads. With the opening of this 800-foot-long segment, drivers now have a complete mile-long road between the two new roundabouts carrying north-south traffic to and from Redmond.

More than 20,000 cars travel Novelty Hill Road each day, heading to a major intersection at Avondale Road.

With the new 195th/196th Avenue Northeast connection, some cars instead will be able to travel south through the new county roundabouts to reach Redmond on a parallel road.

Besides reducing congestion, distributing trips on area roads also is expected to reduce rear-end collisions at the Avondale intersection, county engineers said.

The overall $17.6 million construction project was built by Scarsella Brothers, Inc., and includes roundabouts at Novelty Hill Road, Union Hill Road and improvements along Northeast 95th Street, 195th/196th Avenue Northeast.

The county’s project team worked closely with the City of Redmond, federal and state agencies and regulators during planning and construction of the project.

Details of improvements

  • Rebuilt Northeast Novelty Hill Road at the intersection of 195th Avenue Northeast, where a new two-lane roundabout was built.
  • Rebuilt and widened Northeast Union Hill Road to include a new four-lane section, with turn lanes in areas and a new two-lane roundabout.
  • Widened and raised Evans Creek Bridge to better accommodate pedestrians, equestrians and bicyclists using the Bear & Evans Creek Trail and Greenway.
  • Built the new 195th Avenue Northeast connection as a two- and three-lane road with full shoulders for pedestrians and bicyclists.
  • Rebuilt and widened 196th Avenue Northeast, adding a turn lane and full 8-foot-wide shoulders.
  • Made project environmental mitigation and surface water quality improvements, including rain gardens, porous pavement and sidewalks and stormwater wetlands.
  • Built improvements and added shoulders along Northeast 95th Street.

More project information, including a vicinity map, is posted online.

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