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Project contact

DeAnna Martin
206-477-3835

Project description

King County restricted right turns from Issaquah Hobart Road SE to SE Tiger Mountain Road between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. on Wednesday, April 13, 2016. Crews installed a "no right turn" sign.


Road needs and funding


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Why is King County doing this project?

Issaquah Hobart and Tiger Mountain Road vicinity map

Issaquah Hobart Road SE is highly congested during the morning commute northbound from Highway 18 to Issaquah. Every day, approximately 800 drivers were trying to skip ahead of waiting cars by turning right onto SE Tiger Mountain Road and rejoining Issaquah Hobart SE further north. As these vehicles rejoined traffic on Issaquah Hobart SE, they were increasing congestion on other roads that connect at that intersection.

Tiger Mountain Road residents have expressed concerns about safety because of the many cars, often speeding, through their neighborhood. Restricting right turns at the Issaquah Hobart/Tiger Mountain intersection will help the local road network work better and reduce speeding along Tiger Mountain Road.

Unfortunately, King County does not have enough funding to expand the capacity of Issaquah Hobart Road SE, and expansion of SE Tiger Mountain Road would be infeasible even if funding were available. The county is working to maximize traffic flow on the existing road network and to direct through traffic on appropriate roadways. Read more about Issaquah Hobart-Tiger Mountain road needs and funding.

This project is part of the County’s efforts to ease congestion, modestly maintain the existing road network, and keep people safe. Restricting right turns during the morning commute from Issaquah Hobart SE to SE Tiger Mountain Road will reduce the incidence of speeding along SE Tiger Mountain Road, keep traffic on a major arterial designed for high volumes of traffic, and improve traffic flow at all intersections along this stretch of Issaquah Hobart.

Other things King County has done include:

  • Adjusted traffic signal timing along Issaquah Hobart Road SE at the intersections with SE May Valley Road and Cedar Grove Road SE.
  • Installed traffic cameras at key intersections along Issaquah Hobart Road SE to allow signal timing to be controlled remotely and adjusted in real time by off-site traffic engineers.
  • Installed traffic signs to guide motorists to use Issaquah Hobart Road SE and discourage motorists from using SE Tiger Mountain Road as a bypass.

Traffic cameras


Frequently-asked questions

Has the right turn restriction been effective?

Yes, since implementing the right turn restriction the County has observed decreased traffic volumes on SE Tiger Mountain Road and less zippering of vehicles further north where SE Tiger Mountain Road rejoins Issaquah Hobart Road SE.

The right turn restriction was implemented to address safety challenges created as increased congestion on the Issaquah Hobart corridor was resulting in drivers using Tiger Mountain Road as a bypass. Issaquah Hobart Road is classified as an Urban Principal Arterial roadway and is designed to provide for movement across and between larger urban regions for through traffic. In contrast, Tiger Mountain Road is classified as an Urban Local Road, which means it was designed to serve local neighborhood traffic volumes and slower speeds.

High volumes of vehicles moving at higher speeds on Tiger Mountain, trying to shorten their commutes by jumping the cue on Issaquah Hobart, created safety issues for all drivers and this neighborhood. Additionally, traffic was slowing and disrupted again where cars rejoined the cue on Issaquah Hobart.

The right turn restriction does not and will not reduce the number of vehicles traveling northbound on Issaquah Hobart during the morning commute. The 800 or so vehicles that were attempting to use Tiger Mountain Road to skip ahead of congestion on Issaquah Hobart, many of which were travelling at faster than the posted 35 MPH speed limit, still rejoined Issaquah Hobart further north backing up traffic at other intersections in the process.

What is King County doing to enforce the right turn restriction?

The King County Sherriff’s Office is responsible for enforcement of the right turn restriction. They periodically monitor and enforce the restriction. Residents can make a complaint about traffic violations using the King County Sherriff’s online traffic complaint reporting system.

What is King County doing to reduce the number of vehicles that travel the already congested Issaquah Hobart roadway?

King County Metro Transit offers vanpools and ridesharing options to help reduce the number of cars on the roadway. Learn more about how to join an existing vanpool or start your own. As some residents have noted, there is no bus service on this stretch of the county road network. King County Council is considering Metro Connects - Metro’s Long Range Plan - a twenty year plan for future transit service for the county. You can learn about Metro’s vision to serve your community in the future on the Metro Connects website.

What else can King County do to address congestion along the Issaquah Hobart corridor?

King County is partnering with the City of Issaquah to conduct a corridor analysis of this area. This study will help identify potential improvements for the unincorporated King County intersections as well as intersections further north within the City of Issaquah's jurisdiction. We anticipate the study will begin next year.

Why can't King County increase capacity on Issaquah Hobart Road SE?

Several county roadways, including Issaquah Hobart Road SE and SE Tiger Mountain Road, are at or near their capacity for carrying traffic, resulting in the congestion people experience today. Unfortunately, King County does not have enough funding to expand the capacity of Issaquah Hobart Road, and expansion of Tiger Mountain Road would not be feasible even if funding were available. Tiger Mountain Road is a two lane neighborhood collector road that provides access to the arterial network. Due to the unique geography of this roadway, including heavily wooded surroundings, narrow shoulders and steep slopes, it is not a candidate for adding additional lanes to increase capacity. King County will continue to address critical safety issues and perform maintenance on this road. Learn more.

Still, lower-cost solutions to help ease congestion along Issaquah Hobart Road SE and SE Tiger Mountain Road have been ongoing. We are focusing on safety and maintenance that will maximize traffic flow on the existing road network and direct traffic. Some examples:

  • Restricting right turns from Issaquah Hobart Road SE to Tiger Mountain Road SE at the intersection of these two roads just north of Highway 18 between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. starting April 13, 2016.
  • Adjusted traffic signal timing along Issaquah Hobart Road SE at the intersections with SE May Valley Road and Cedar Grove Road SE.
  • Installed traffic cameras at key intersections along Issaquah Hobart Road SE to allow signal timing to be controlled and adjusted remotely.
  • Installed traffic signs to guide motorists to use Issaquah Hobart Road SE and discourage motorists from using SE Tiger Mountain Road as a bypass.

Recently, the county convened a task force of regional leaders and community members to consider funding challenges. The task force recently issued a report with their findings. Next steps include working with elected officials, cities and other regional stakeholders to propose detailed solutions. We encourage you to visit the Bridges and Roads Task Force webpage for more information.

When did the right turn restriction take effect?

On April 13, right turns from Issaquah Hobart Road SE to Tiger Mountain Road SE were prohibited between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. Monday through Friday.

We originally planned for the prohibition to be in effect between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m., but after receiving feedback from local residents and businesses, we decided to reduce the prohibition timeframe to minimize impacts on them.

What about local access—are right turns allowed for drivers accessing local homes or businesses along Tiger Mountain Road or in Mirrormont?

No. The right-turn prohibition applies to all vehicles except buses and emergency vehicles. A “local access only” sign has been up at this intersection for some time and hasn’t been effective in deterring drivers from using Tiger Mountain Road to skip ahead of waiting cars on Issaquah Hobart Road.

How can I get to and from home and local businesses when right turns are prohibited?

Drivers should keep in mind that there are no turn restrictions for people trying to connect to Issaquah Hobart Road SE from Tiger Mountain Road SE. Residents trying to leave Tiger Mountain Road in the morning can turn in either direction onto Issaquah Hobart Road SE. In addition, left turns onto Tiger Mount Road SE from Issaquah Hobart Road SE are still permitted for those traveling from the north.

Those traveling to local residences or businesses in Mirrormont or along Tiger Mountain Road SE from the south can continue to turn right on SE Mirrormont Blvd or at Tiger Mountain Road SE further north on Issaquah Hobart Road SE.

Does King County have authority to restrict access to a public road?

King County is the local authority with jurisdiction of the Issaquah Hobart corridor in the unincorporated area of Four Creeks/Tiger Mountain. King County is granted authority by state law to restrict or close roads within its jurisdiction when continued use by vehicles or by any class of vehicles will greatly damage road or will be dangerous to traffic. (See RCW 47.48.010)

Call us:

206-477-8100 or 1-800-527-6237 (1-800-KC-ROADS)

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