WALLA WALLA -- A scaled-down Myra Road grade-lowering project was favorably reviewed by the city councils of College Place and Walla Walla.
On Monday, a report by HDJ Design Group had the $2.6 million project possibly starting in March or April 2013 and finished by early fall.
The project will lower the 5 percent grade at the south end of Myra Road to just over three percent, which will improve visibility and traction during inclement weather and resolve other safety concerns.
The project is funded primarily by federal and state transportation improvement grants, with Walla Walla and College Place each matching roughly $300,000 in funding.
At one point, the project had involved building an overpass, bypass lanes and other pedestrian and cycling improvements that took it to about $5.7 million, with no promise of additional funding from government agencies.
The overpass and other improvements were dropped last year and a preliminary $2.8 million design was approved.
The new design will include a number of improvements to Fort Walla Walla Park, including a 10-foot-wide multi-use path and improved sledding area.
The project must now undergo an environmental review before it can continue; that approval is expected this summer.
Alfred Diaz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 526-8325.