Just as Blaine residents began to get their hopes up, Governor Jay Inslee opted to veto the I-5/Exit 274 interchange project from a sweeping transportation bill passed by the state senate last month.
His signature was the last step remaining before $12,100,000 was allotted for the first phase of the project, which was years in the making and aimed at improving access to Blaine.
Proposed was a new southbound off-ramp on Interstate 5 at Exit 274 onto Peace Portal Drive. Additional improvements included the construction of a direct northbound connection to the industrial area from the existing northbound off ramp; the route would have been reconfigured to connect to
Currently, Exit 276 is the first southbound exit from the border and is six miles away from the next available off-ramp.
In a statement released on May 16, the governor cited insufficient information about the scope and cost for the project as the reason behind the veto.
“The I-5/Exit 274 interchange project in Blaine does not appear in LEAP Transportation Document 2017-1, nor is there any information about project scope,” read the statement. “This LEAP transportation document should not be amended for a project without sufficient information about its scope and cost. For this reason, I have vetoed [the project from the bill].”
The Northern Light will update this story.