The following is a City of Walla Walla news release:
Summer 2013 will be a very busy road and utility construction season in the City of Walla Walla. Multiple federal, state, and local funding sources will be used to construct five separate road improvement projects, two water line replacement projects, two sewer projects and one stormwater project. The city will also increase street maintenance at many locations throughout the city.
The city engineering team will work hard to minimize construction delays and detours. Still, some delays will be unavoidable. While all these projects will disrupt traffic at times, all area businesses will remain accessible during construction.
To provide complete and up-to-date information on projects, the City has a new a project-specific website, gowallawalla.us, where the latest information on the construction projects will be posted. Details schedules, detour routes, and street closures will be regularly updated. You may also call the City’s engineering team at 527-4537.
Here is a summary of the projects planned for construction this summer:
1) Myra Road: State Route 125 to Garrison Creek Project: This project is the last step in a long-term plan to redirect truck traffic from Ninth Avenue to Myra Road. This summer, we will lower the steep intersection of Myra Road and The Dalles Military Road by approximately eight feet to improve sight distance and meet access requirements for trucks traveling between Highway 12 and State Route 125.
Construction is anticipated to begin in June and continue through October. During this time, the intersection of Myra Road and The Dalles Military Road will be closed to all traffic. Detours will be in place; however, all businesses in the area will remain accessible during construction. Access for businesses on The Dalles Military Road will be from the east, by way of Ninth Avenue. Access for the Twelfth Street businesses in College Place will be from the west on Twelfth Street. Access to Stone Creek Place businesses — Petco and Big-5 — will be from the south by way of State Route 125. Community Bank will be accessible from the west by using SE Commercial Drive.
Funding is provided from several sources, including multiple federal and state grants matched with local funding from the cities of Walla Walla and College Place.
2) Rose Street Project: Community surveys have repeatedly chosen Rose Street as our top priority for improvement. This summer, Rose Street will be reconstructed and resurfaced from Thirteenth Avenue through Myra Road. Construction is expected to start in July and be complete in November. Construction will be staged to allow one lane of traffic to continue in each direction, but delays will be unavoidable at times. Local access on Rose Street will be maintained, and business will remain open during construction. Through-traffic is encouraged to seek alternative routes such as Poplar Street or Pine Street. All funds are from the Sales Tax for Streets Fund. The fund, approved by voters in 2012, reserves 0.2% of sales taxes collected in Walla Walla for street repairs.
3) Thirteenth Avenue – Abadie to Cherry Improvements: Thirteenth Avenue will be completely reconstructed from Abadie Street to Cherry Street. This project will complete a multiyear process of improvements to Thirteenth Avenue between Rose Street and the Walla Walla Penitentiary. Work will include street widening, stormwater, curbs, gutters, sidewalks and street lighting. Stormwater treatment improvements within the planter strip areas from Rose Street to Rees Avenue will also be included. Thirteenth Avenue from Abadie Street to Cherry Street will be closed to through traffic. Project funding comes from a federal grant, traffic mitigation funds from prior development activities, and two state grants. The project is expected to begin construction in June and be completed in November.
4) Pleasant-Home-Fern-Statesman IRRP Project: This project includes street resurfacing, sidewalk upgrades, water main replacement, sewer line repairs, and stormwater improvements. Construction has already begun and is scheduled to continue through September. Pleasant Street and Fern Avenue will remain open to through traffic. You should expect delays and use alternate routes whenever possible. Statesman Street and Home Avenue will be closed during construction and only open to local traffic. This project is funded entirely from the city’s Infrastructure Repair & Replacement Program.
5) Orchard Street Sidewalk Improvements: Sidewalks, curbs, gutters, bike lanes, and parallel parking will be added along Orchard Street between Ninth Avenue and Chase Avenue. Water and stormwater utilities will also be upgraded as part of the project. Construction will start in late June and be complete in August, before the start of the Walla Walla County Fair. Orchard will be closed to all traffic during construction. Parking along the affected length of Orchard Street will not be available during construction. The school parking lot on the east end of Garrison Middle school will remain accessible from Chase Avenue. This project is funded by multiple state and federal sources, local utility improvement funds and through contributions from our project partners, Walla Walla County and Valley Transit.
1) Brevor and Brevor Place: This project will replace the leaky main water line and leaky service lines on Brevor Place and Brevor Drive between its two intersections with Crestview Drive. Local street access will be maintained during construction, but delays will occur. Funding for this project is provided by the Walla Walla Water Utility.
2) North Eighth Avenue: This project will replace the leaky main water line and leaky service lines on North Eighth Avenue from Paine Street to West Rees Avenue. Local street access will be maintained during construction, but delays will occur. Funding for this project is provided by the Walla Walla Water Utility.
1) Oak Street Alley Sewer Replacement: This project will replace a high-maintenance sewer main in the alley between Oak and Pine. Local alley access will be limited during construction, which should last from July through mid-September. Funding for this project is provided by the Walla Walla Wastewater Utility.
2) Holiday Inn Pump Station Elimination: This project will remove the problematic sewer pump station near the Holiday Inn on Pine Street, and reroute sewage flow to the recently constructed Myra Road sewer main. Traffic affects should be minimal because most construction will happen outside of the roadway. Construction is scheduled from July through mid-September. Funding for this project is provided by the Walla Walla Wastewater Utility.
Second Avenue Lincoln Creek Improvement: The pipe under Second Avenue will be lined to reinforce the existing pipe. Two new manholes will be installed to improve access to the pipe. There will be some minor traffic delays, but delays should be minimal because most work will be in the parking strips outside of the travel lanes. Construction is scheduled for late July through early August. The project is funded by the Walla Walla Stormwater Fund.
Street Maintenance Projects:
The Walla Walla Street maintenance Division will be maintaining and improving streets by repairing pavement and sealing cracks on many streets to keep them serviceable and safe. These improvements will not be comprehensive, but will serve as an interim “Band-Aid” measure while adequate funds for major repairs can be gathered through the Sales Tax for Streets Fund. The fund, approved by voters in 2012, reserves 0.2% of sales taxes collected in Walla Walla for street repairs.
Look for “Band-Aids” this summer on these streets:
• Myra Road from Poplar Street to Garrison Creek
• Second Avenue from Cherry Street to Howard Street
• Alder Street from Roosevelt Street to Park Street
• Isaacs Avenue from Wilbur Avenue to Rose Street
Chip Seal Projects:
Chip Sealing is a common pavement maintenance practice that extends pavement life. This method of road maintenance costs is less than one-fourth the cost of conventional asphalt overlay while protecting the road surface, sealing cracks, and enhancing safety by providing good skid resistance. Chip sealing is a simple process. We apply a thin film of heated asphalt liquid to the road surface, followed by small aggregates or chips. The chips are then compacted and, finally, excess stone is swept from the surface.
The City of Walla Walla will chip seal three sections of road this summer.
• Melrose Street: Wilbur to Sumach
• Sumach Street: Melrose to N. Rose
• Catherine Street: Chestnut to Birch
The City of Walla Walla team is excited to begin these summer projects to improve our infrastructure. We understand the delays and difficulties created by road and utility construction. We pledge to minimize delays and service interruptions wherever possible. We greatly appreciate your patience and understanding as we work to improve Walla Walla’s roads and utilities.