The City of Edmonds’ Highway 99 revitalization project will receive $22.5 million through the Move Ahead Washington transportation bill that was recently passed by the Washington State Legislature. The bill was signed by Gov. Jay Inselee on March 25.
“This package brings long overdue investments to our most diverse and most underserved residents,” said Edmonds Mayor Mike Nelson. “It will fund the second phase of our multiphase transportation improvements along the entire Edmonds Highway 99 corridor.” Nelson offered thanks to 21st District State Sen. Marko Liias “for leading the effort at the state level” for Highway 99 funding.
The Highway 99 corridor includes a two-mile stretch through Edmonds and the land area around it. The Highway 99 Subarea Plan, completed in 2017, focused on a community vision and approaches for making long-term improvements to land use and transportation, with an eye to retaining the positive characteristics of many parts of the corridor.
According to a city press release, the Highway 99 Revitalization Project has several goals including:
- Safety and walkability: Create a safer environment for pedestrians and transit riders by improving sidewalks and adding streetscape improvements.
- Economic development: Stimulate the economy by attracting and encouraging new businesses, investments, and redevelopment with the creation of a more attractive corridor.
- Identity: Establish a distinct identity along the corridor supporting existing cultural destinations and amenities and creating a welcoming and attractive environment. A public naming process is being initiated to recognize this area not just as a state arterial, but as a culturally diverse neighborhood. The popular summer evening market is also returning in 2022.
In August 2017, the Edmonds City Council passed ordinances to adopt the Highway 99 Subarea Plan and Planned Action EIS. The city is working with consultant SCJ Alliance to design how the corridor will look and feel in the future. These include both the Highway 99 Gateway — Revitalization Stage 1 and Stage 2. Construction for Stage 1 is scheduled to begin this spring, but the city has not yet responded to our request for details on what that construction involves.
The Highway 99 Gateway-Revitalization Stage 2 project includes a raised center median for access management, a pedestrian crosswalk just north of 234th Street Southwest possibly controlled by High Intensity Activity Crosswalk (HAWK) signal, and gateway signage at the northern and southern entry points to Edmonds.
“No longer will these areas on Highway 99 be neighborhoods you pass through,” Nelson said. “These will be neighborhoods you travel to.”
Move Ahead Washington is a 16-year package that includes $16.8 billion in investments for projects across the state, including funding for public transportation, bicycle and pedestrian safety, road preservation and maintenance, and climate mitigation.
For more information about the Highway 99 Revitalization Project, visit www.edmondscorridor99.org.