State Route 530 reopened Saturday following a tribute for the landslide victims. Families, friends and community members walked the road alongside Governor Jay Inslee as they toured the area. There was then a moment of silence for those who lost their lives.
"It is a shock to see for the first time and I would not want to be driving it for the first time to see that," said Ann Nemnich, resident.
The highway was closed for two months while crews worked to clear the mud and debris. Contractors removed 90,000 cubic yards of material from the road.
"It symbolizes strength, it symbolizes the self reliance of the area and the community that we are a ‘get it done’ community," said Ken Klein, Snohomish County Council.
Transportation officials said the road is a critical link between the Oso, Darrington, and Arlington communities.
There will only be one lane of traffic so drivers will continue to follow a pilot car in both directions. A 600 foot section of road was wiped out by the slide. It is now filled with gravel.
The Washington State Department of Transportation will build a new road through the slide zone. The $20.57 million project should be complete by this fall. The Federal Highway Administration’s emergency-relief fund will pay for the project.