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Washington State Route 221

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State Route 221 marker

State Route 221
Route information
Auxiliary route of SR 22
Defined by RCW 47.17.425
Maintained by WSDOT
Length 25.95 mi[1] (41.76 km)
Existed 1964 – present
Major junctions
North end SR 22 at Prosser
South end SR 14 at Paterson
Counties Benton
Highway system
SR 215SR 223

State Route 221 (SR 221) is a 25.95-mile (41.76 km) long state highway located entirely within Benton County, Washington, United States. The highway serves to connect the unincorporated community of Paterson to the county seat Prosser. The highway has existed since at least 1926 and was designated as Primary State Highway 8E from 1937 until the 1964 renumbering of Washington state highways.

Route description[edit]

Washington State Route 221 (SR 221) starts at an intersection with SR 14 in the unincorporated community of Paterson. After leaving Paterson the highway travels north through rural farm land as a two-lane highway. A few minor roads are intersected before the roadway turns to the west after about 17 mi (27 km), before turning back to the north. After the highway resumes its northerly course it climbs into the Horse Heaven Hills, gaining a passing lane through the uphill segments,[1] before finally terminating at SR 22 in south Prosser.[2]

Every year the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) conducts a series of surveys on its highways in the state to measure traffic volume. This is expressed in terms of average annual daily traffic (AADT), which is a measure of traffic volume for any average day of the year. In 2009, WSDOT calculated that as few as 2,000 cars traveled through the central part of the highway, and as many as 2,500 cars at the interchange with SR 22.[3]


The roadway on its current alignment has existed since at least 1926,[4] however there are records of a road between Paterson and Prosser since 1906.[5][6] The highway was designated Secondary State Highway 8E (SSH 8E) in 1937,[7] but the route number was changed to SR 221 during the 1964 state highway renumbering.[8]

High winds have forced the closure of SR 221 in 2003,[9] 2004,[10] and 2005 due to large amounts of dust being blown around, causing visibility to drop to almost zero through the Horse Heaven Hills.[11]

Major intersections[edit]

The entire highway is within unincorporated Benton County.[2]

0.000.00 SR 14 – Roosevelt, PlymouthAt-grade intersection, southern terminus
25.9541.76 SR 22 – ProsserAt-grade intersection, northern terminus
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi


  1. ^ a b c "State Highway Log Planning Report 2009 SR 2 to SR 971" (PDF). Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT). p. 1237. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  2. ^ a b The Road Atlas (Map). 1 in ≈ 20 mi. Cartography by Rand McNally. Rand McNally. 2009. p. 109. § K14 - L14. ISBN 978-0-528-94219-8.
  3. ^ "2009 Annual Traffic Report" (PDF). WSDOT. p. 161. Retrieved October 26, 2010.
  4. ^ Horse Haven Quadrangle (Map). Cartography by Brokaw, S. E. Automobile Club of Washington. 1926. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  5. ^ Blalock Island (Map). United States Geological Survey (USGS). 1906. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  6. ^ Prosser (Map). USGS. 1915. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  7. ^ Map of Benton County (Map). Washington State Department of Highways. 1937. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  8. ^ Prahl, C.G. (December 1, 1965). "Identification of State Highways" (PDF). Washington State Highway Commission - Department of Highways. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  9. ^ Taylor, John (November 19, 2003). "11/19/03 Around the Valley". Yakima Herald-Republic. The Seattle Times Company. p. B1. Retrieved October 25, 2010. (subscription required)
  10. ^ "Storm sweeps state with wind, lightning". Ellensburg Daily Record. Pioneers Newspapers Inc. April 28, 2004. p. A8. Retrieved October 25, 2010.
  11. ^ Muir, Patrick D. (March 17, 2005). "It was a real dust-up in Lower Valley". Yakima Herald-Republic. The Seattle Times Company. Retrieved October 25, 2010. (subscription required)

External links[edit]

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