Edmonds receives $700,000 state grant to move Waterfront Connector project forward

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Artist’s rendering of the proposed Edmonds Street Waterfront Connector, comprising a single-lane roadway linking Sunset Avenue to Brackett’s Landing Park, giving access to the waterfront regardless of train traffic and track blockages.

Edmonds Mayor Earling on Thursday announced the City has received a $700,000 state appropriation to support initial design, environmental work and permitting for the Edmonds Street Waterfront Connector project. The state money joins $295,000 in matching local funds from the City of Edmonds, the Port of Edmonds, Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF), Sound Transit and Community Transit.

According to a city announcement:

With continued opportunities for significant input by the public and agency stakeholders, the City will refine the alignment and bridge type for the Waterfront Connector. This will in turn help narrow the focus on the specific areas of environmental impact that will require further analysis during the permitting process. From there, the initial design can be developed and will form the basis for seeking the funding to complete final design and construction.

“This is exciting news for Edmonds as this is an important next step in accomplishing our goal of providing a safer, more reliable crossing for pedestrians and emergency vehicles at our downtown waterfront,” Earling said. “I look forward to traveling to Washington, D.C. later this year to continue our work to secure federal funding to complete this critical project for our region.”

The estimated cost of the Waterfront Connector project is $30 million.

Last November, Earling unveiled his recommendations for alternatives to the at-grade rail crossings at Main and Dayton Streets, which followed a set of findings and recommendations issued by the mayor’s Advisory Task Force after a 13-month study process.

The task force initially considered up to 51 various alternatives to address pedestrian and vehicle safety, efficient traffic movement, emergency access and intermodal access. The group held four public open houses as part of its process to analyze the options and narrow the field of alternatives. The task force identified a preferred alternative: a single-lane structure connecting Sunset Avenue at Edmonds Street to the parking lot at Brackett’s Landing North.

Known as the Edmonds Street Waterfront Connector, the project will provide immediate waterfront access for fire and police units when that access is blocked by train traffic at the city’s two at-grade access points, Main and West Dayton streets.

Emergency responders now have to wait until train traffic clears, or — in the event of a train parked over both crossings — they must cross on foot through the trains. Currently, at-grade railroad crossings at Dayton and Main Streets are temporarily blocked by 35-40 trains each day along the city’s waterfront and could eventually be blocked by up to 100 trains a day by 2030.

And when a train is stalled in front of the ferry lanes for a significant time, the Waterfront Connector may also aid traffic control officers in ferry on- or off-loading.

You can find more information about the project on the Edmonds Street Waterfront Connector web page: http://www.edmondswa.gov/community-services/alternatives-analysis.html.

2 COMMENTS

  1. An incredible amount of money being appropriated supposedly for emergency crossing at the tracks……….I am still wondering what happened to the rest of the money from federal grants, I believe totaling somewhere in the ball-park of almost a half a million for the Sunset work and corridor (just from Federal Grants…….I believe it was stated by Phil Williams a couple weeks ago that only $160,000 was spent on Sunset…….So, we wonder WHERE the half a million in Federal Grants for Sunset, noise mitigation, etc……. was spent????….Apparently, not on Sunset Street……..So, was theFederal money sent back to the Federal Government??? and again it is against the law to put false information on Federal Grant forms…..the money not used on Sunset Street?? from those grants This brings me to THIS rail crossing and the 30 million!! that will supposedly be needed…..and I assume our government will manage to also get!!!So, it is interesting that recently our Mayor wrote his column for the Beacon and all the many, many projects and permitting being done right (development/construction/real estate) now on the second floor of City Hall. The one that stood out (as many have been trying to figure WHAT the bridge on Edmonds will really for???? (as there were and are many, many inexpensive ways to have emergency help at crossing not in the ball-park of 30 million!!! is a structure that conveniently will be going up at Third Avenue North and Edmonds Street (right apparently just before the bridge walk to the beach) and the structure is listed as BEACH WALK Apartments – How convenient, right there for the easy walk to the beach. Like the Roundabout, Sunset Street and now this supposed emergency crossing bridge……..I believe if I remember right, one fatality at that crossing in 100 years from someone not having access because of the train, more $$$$$$$ and Federal grant money that would be really needed at many, many towns across our country at rail crossings given to this city – Those that really do have a problem end up going without when the Federal money is gone. It is shocking to me that these Federal grants are all being used not for the real intended purposes, in my opinion. This town apparently thinks it is ok to take Federal Grant money that is really needed in other places and use it just for our city and developer friends to make money…..and keep workers working on projects that don’t appear to be what the grant money is for….. Again, it is against the law to put information on Federal Grant forms that stretches the truth or omits or in some case outright lies, in my opinion. To see that his was really about development and an actual building right by the start at that bridge that will be called “Beach Walk Apartments” is shocking. That our current Mayor has been in real estate and development forever and a day tells me everything about these monies that are spent for other things – development & real estate – above all
    That our Mayor writes a whole column in the Beacon this last week on all of the unbelievable amount of current development in this small town for profit is astounding when one thinks of all the more important things that we should be focusing on…….real housing for lower income and housing so this community is actually really diverse all over, not just in one area, not with white upper income people mostly ….. sticking vulnerable people and people of color once again over on Highway 99, the heroin epi center for our state/crime avenue, our city with so many areas with no sidewalks, rutted dangerous asphalt streets all over, streets with incorrect directional markings, etc. etc. So much this Mayor could be really doing for our city rather than focusing only on construction and development. I would like to add that we are a country of laws and that is what keeps us civilized…….To take Federal monies that are really needed by areas that are dangerous and use it for other purpose here, in my opinion, is like saying our town leadership thinks it is above the law……..Three projects right now that I have seen appear to fit into this – Sunset Street, the Roundabout and now the bridge to the beach. I would like to add that I sat through all the City Council meetings and listened to many ideas that did not fall in the millions of dollars of Federal funds to fix these things. I’d like to know if our government sent back the Federal funds that came to around $250,000 and $350,000 approximately that were not spent on Sunset?? but were received for Sunset Street.

  2. I believe the Sunset Street project was ALSO mentioned as being a corridor to the waterfront, just like this……I just have to say WOW, if you don’t get it with one project, go for it with another

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