Holiday travelers and skiers enjoying new snow at Snoqualmie Pass this weekend won’t see the finished product but will have indoor facilities available starting Friday, Dec. 21, one month ahead of schedule.

Crews will reopen Traveler’s Rest, a Washington State Department of Transportation Safety Rest Area, for limited use. This means visitors can have access to warm, indoor, flush toilets, but can’t drink or use the water for hand washing. Hand sanitizer will be available.

WSDOT and contractors have a bit or work left to complete the close to $600,000 project to upgrade the popular stopping point for skiers, families, and tourists heading over Interstate 90 at Snoqualmie Pass. A weekday closure is possible in early January for final work.

By late January, the quarter of a million people who pass through the doors of Traveler’s Rest each year will see plenty of upgrades, including:

  • new lighting, heat and ventilation systems
  • a new unisex restroom for families
  • increased accessibility for people with disabilities
  • a larger parking area and sidewalk improvements to increase pedestrian safety
  • a new roof and exterior surfacing repairs that will extend the life of the building for 50 years
  • an added generator connection that will allow WSDOT to keep the rest area open during power outages

Traveler’s Rest was originally built in 1938 as part of the Roosevelt-era New Deal public works projects. Today, the building houses the rest area and local business Red Mountain Coffee, a deli and coffee shop. The restrooms, operated by WSDOT, are open 24 hours a day.

Find out more about WSDOT safety rest areas here.