Badwater Road Construction Starts May 9
DEATH VALLEY, CA – Construction on Badwater Road will start May 9 to repair damage from October’s flash floods. The route from southern Death Valley to Shoshone, California will remain closed until construction is complete, which is scheduled for July 14.
Storms in October caused severe flash flooding in Death Valley National Park. Road crews cleared debris off roads and reopened hundreds of miles of roads in the following months. Badwater Road is currently open for 47 miles from CA-190 past Badwater to the unpaved Harry Wade Road.
The Jubilee Pass section of Badwater Road is closed from Harry Wade Road (milepost 47) to milepost 56. Through traffic from Shoshone, California to southern DeathValley is not possible during this closure. This section of road has been closed since October and will remain closed during construction due to safety concerns. Due to concerns about summer temperatures, some construction work may take place at night. Due to the possibility of nighttime work, residents of Shoshone may see and hear construction trucks at any hour.
October’s storms heavily damaged the Jubilee Pass section of Badwater Road, and washed away extensive sections of pavement and road base. Federal Highway Administration is funding these repairs. William Kanayan Construction is the general contractor performing the repairs.
Scotty’s Castle was the other area of the park most severely affected by October’s storms. A contract to connect a temporary waterline from the spring to the historic structures’ fire suppression system is in progress. Southern California Edison has replaced power poles and repairs of the electrical distribution system at Scotty’s Castle should start soon. There is still a lot more work to be done, including redesigning and reconstructing 8 miles of road, replacing portions of the sewer system, permanent water line replacement, and repairs to multiple historic structures. Water entered the annex wing of Scotty’s Castle and two other historic structures again during a storm on April 27, highlighting the need for repairs. Park officials hope to have Scotty’s Castle fully repaired and reopened by 2019.