August 30, 2012 in Washington Voices

Neighborhood seeks crosswalk on 29th

By The Spokesman-Review
 

The Manito/Cannon Hill Neighborhood Council has asked the city to put in a crosswalk at the intersection of Manito Boulevard and 29th Avenue. It’s the second time the neighborhood council has made the request, and at its meeting Tuesday evening at Wilson Elementary School that crosswalk was at the top of the agenda.

The neighborhood council suggested that adding the crosswalk now, while that part of 29th Avenue is under reconstruction, seemed prudent.

But a crosswalk is not part of the 29th Avenue project, and the question now is whether it’s too late to add it.

“Everyone knows that 29th has some serious challenges for pedestrian crossing on that stretch,” said city Councilman Jon Snyder at the meeting. He encouraged the neighborhood council to not feel restricted by the cost of the project. “For too long in this city pedestrian concerns have taken a back seat. There are other monies out there to fund these projects.”

Specifically, $140,000 of Photo Red dollars – fines paid by drivers who are caught on camera running a red light – have been allocated to each City Council district for traffic calming projects.

The construction that has closed 29th Avenue between Grand Boulevard and Bernard Street is being delayed by water and gas line problems and by basalt under the road bed, wrote city spokeswoman Ann Deasy in an email; the project should be wrapped up by late September.

It’s uncertain whether the second phase of the 29th Avenue construction, from Bernard Street to High Drive, will be postponed until next year. A delay may work well in terms of adding a crosswalk.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Snyder asked the city’s traffic engineering department to come up with three crosswalk options and present them to the neighborhood council.

The current construction on 29th Avenue is sending a lot of traffic through the intersection of Grand Boulevard and 37th Avenue.

Deasy said in her email that the city will begin work on the traffic light there in September. It will take about a month to install the light.


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