Too late to say anything now

Published on Thu, Jun 13, 2002
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Too late to say anything now

There was no public input at a June 10 public hearing on the city’s six-year transportation plan, which will be up for final council approval June 24.
“The focus was on keeping it fairly austere,” said city assistant public works director Steve Banham. “We don’t have a lot of dollars for construction. We don’t even have dollars for maintenance.” Efforts in the next couple of years will be more focussed on getting funds than on spending them, he said.
The top project on the list is the reconstruction of Marine Drive, planned to get rolling in 2007 with planning getting underway in 2005. After that comes the realignment of the Bell Road, Blaine Road, S.R. 543 intersection, also projected not to get rolling until 2005 or after.

The third priority on the list is a little more immediate. An access study for Blaine’s exits from I-5 has already been funded and would study whether additional access to the freeway is needed and where.

Other projects further out include reconstruction of Cherry Street, Boblett Street and the H Street hill, and additional bike paths. Reconstruction of 6th Street from H to D Street is the most immediate project on the list scheduled to get started this year.

The county six-year transportation plan, scheduled for a public hearing on July 16, would have some local impacts and city manager Gary Tomsic encouraged county council members to push for Blaine priorities. “We’d like to encourage the county to keep the extension of Lincoln Road high on their list so we can move forward with our utility improvements,” he said.
Banham explained that the new Lincoln Road substation and the Semiahmoo express feeder electric projects and the plans for a sewer diversion to start sending some Blaine wastewater to Birch Bay couldn’t move forward until the design was complete for the county’s planned extension of Lincoln Road. “We’ve asked them to speed up the Lincoln Road project so we know what the cross section will be,” Banham said. “If they need to move our utility, we would bear the cost.”

The reconstruction of existing segments of Lincoln Road and a new section connecting Harborview Road to Blaine Road is now the number 13 priority on the county’s six-year transportation improvement plan, phased to start construction in summer 2004..



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