Reminder: City Council wants your opinion on roundabout tonight, and here’s our poll too

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Background:

A roundabout already in the design phase at Five Corners is predicted to be a lively topic of discussion at Tuesday night’s Edmonds City Council meeting. The City Council voted unanimously last July to authorize the mayor and city staff to sign a consultant agreement to begin the planning process for the roundabout at 212th Street Southwest and 84th Avenue West. The city received a federal grant for $463,000 to fund final design and right-of-way acquisition; with a required 13.5 percent local match set to be paid for through the city’s Street Fund.  The city is continuing to pursue grant money for the construction phase.

According to City of Edmonds Public Works Director Phil Williams, the city has spent $70,000 on consulting fees for the project so far and would have to return the grant money and absorb that cost if the council decides to stop the project.

1 COMMENT

  1. I see that the City received a federal grant for $463,000 to fund final design and right-of-way acquisition; with a required 13.5 percent local match set to be paid for through the city’s Street Fund. It looks like the City has already exceeded the required local match of $62,505 as the City has reportedly spent $70,000 on consulting fees for the roundabout project so far. I wonder how much more of Edmond’s taxpayer money the City will have to spend to fund final design and right-of-way acquisition?

    Next, turning to the construction phase, the City is continuing to pursue grant money for the construction phase. The construction phase of the project is expected to be about $2 million, per another website.

    I have 2 concerns, a question and an opinion.

    My first concern: Assuming the construction phase will be about $2 million, what happens if the City is unsuccessful in its pursuit of Grant Money? With Federal and State financial issues well publicized, I believe this is a legitimate concern.

    My second concern: What happens if the project experiences Cost Overruns, Changes Orders or even Equitable Adjustments? Would the Edmond’s taxpayer be responsible to pay for 100% of these possibilities, or just the percent local match?

    My question is: Assuming a Federal or State grant is obtained, what will be the required percent local match set to be paid for through the city’s Street Fund? Will it be 13.5%, higher or lower?

    If I knew the FINAL total for construction would be $2,000,000 and the local match would be the same 13.5%, I could rest assured that the city’s MINIMUM out of pocket for the entire project would be $340,000. It could possibly be much more than this.

    Finally, my opinion as a citizen who has spent much time in our City’s Code, I would much rather spend $340,000 updating and correcting our City’s Code than paying for this roundabout. In my strong opinion, an updated City Code with fewer errors and ambiguities would provide far greater benefit to the City than a roundabout at one intersection that many people believe has been adequate for years.

    Any citizen can review the City’s website to obtain a history of the City’s Code rewrite efforts . . .following is one example:

    November 20, 2007:
    CITY ATTORNEY ANNUAL REPORT
    The biggest issue at the start of 2007 was the code rewrite; for a variety of reasons including staff illnesses and his sabbatical, little progress was made on the code rewrite.

    The City has known since 2004/2005 that the piecemeal amendments to the Code since 1980 had resulted in the Code being difficult to use and administer. I believe it is long overdue and much more important that many other items that the City prioritizes.

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