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Interstate 605 (Washington)

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Interstate 605 marker

Interstate 605
Route information
Auxiliary route of I‑5
History: Proposed since ca. 1968
Highway system
SR 603 SR 702

Interstate 605 (I-605) is the common designation given by local media outlets to several proposals for a new auxiliary Interstate Highway bypassing I-5 and I-405 in the U.S. state of Washington. Proposals have been heard from since the 1960s, including highways connecting from I-5 all the way to the Canada–US border, and some just between I-5 and I-90. The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) has no projects designated I-605 at this time. However, a project to convert State Route 18 (SR 18) to a limited-access freeway is under construction currently.


Some of the first plans for a new Interstate Highway freeway, bypassing I-405, surfaced in 1968. The first proposal was to create a new highway between I-405 and the west banks of Lake Sammamish. Residents however forced the highway to the east banks of the lake after voicing their concerns. Residents on the east side of the lake voiced similar concerns and the plan was later dropped.[1]

In 1998, the Washington State Legislature ordered a $500,000 study to investigate the benefits of extending SR 18 north to Everett through the Snoqualmie Valley.[2][3] The plan was dropped as the study found that on average only five minutes would be saved over current routes.[1] In 2002, Bellevue Square owner Kemper Freeman, Jr. made his support known for a new freeway linking Snohomish County via the Snoqualmie Valley.[4]

Another $500,000 study was ordered in 2003 by the legislature, creating a new commerce corridor to link Lewis County in the south to the Canada–US border in the north.[1] However the study showed that a highway existing north of I-90 was not economically feasible. The study proposed a toll road only for trucks, since the presence of passenger cars would discourage truck drivers from using the new alternate route. The highway was estimated to cost between $13.5 and $19 billion.[5]

Related projects[edit]

The state currently has no plans to build Interstate 605. WSDOT however is widening SR 18 between I-5 and I-90, with only the segment between the Issaquah Hobart Road and I-90 yet to be completed, creating a full limited-access freeway between I-5 and I-90, southeast of I-405.[6] While SR 18 has been a part of some I-605 proposals, it only allows drivers to bypass the Greater Seattle area on the southern and eastern sides.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Singer, Natalie (July 15, 2004). "State study revives idea of new Western Washington highway". The Seattle Times. The Seattle Times Company. Retrieved November 6, 2010. 
  2. ^ Herrinton, Gregg (April 28, 1998). "Interstate 605 Could Help Ease Traffic Mess". The Columbian. p. 1. Retrieved December 14, 2013 – via ProQuest. (subscription required (help)). 
  3. ^ Whitely, Peyton (April 24, 1998). "Is Freeway the Way? Proposed new north–south interstate on Eastside has some mountains to climb". The Seattle Times. p. B1. Retrieved December 30, 2016. 
  4. ^ Gilmore, Susan (August 24, 2003). "Some freeway plans never went anywhere". The Seattle Times. The Seattle Times Company. Retrieved November 6, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Valley will not see proposed foothills highway". Snoqualmie Valley Record. Sound Publishing Inc. October 28, 2004. Retrieved November 6, 2010. 
  6. ^ Mishler, Bronlea. "Project — SR 18 - Issaquah Hobart Road to I-90". Washington State Department of Transportation. Retrieved November 7, 2010. 
  7. ^ Google (November 7, 2010). "SR 18" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved November 7, 2010. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]