November 2, 1998
City to present 'Tran Plan'
by Andrew Walgamott
WOODINVILLE--Ever wonder what the city is doing to address traffic?
This week you'll have a chance to see how Woodinville plans to improve streets at an open house.
On display at City Hall Nov. 4 will be a series of projects in the early stages that staff hope will ease traffic congestion. There will be schematic drawings, project managers, consultants, city staff and comment cards.
Some of the projects Woodinville is looking into are:
- Widening N.E. 171st Pl. adding a second southbound turn lane to 131st Ave. N.E.;
- Study the feasibility of a new off-ramp from SR 522 to N.E. 177th Pl.;
- Signalize and work on the intersection of 127th Pl. N.E. and SR 202;
- Provide a pedestrian/bike path along 124th Ave. N.E. as well as left-turn pockets;
- Stripe a pedestrian crossing on 131st Ave. N.E. to Wilmot Gateway Park.
Most are in the preliminary engineering phase and wouldn't actually begin construction until 2000 or later.
Woodinville is struggling to catch up with its streets. Interim Public Works Director Deborah Knight says the city has inherited a rural infrastructure from King County and is now attempting to build an urban one. She said it takes five years for major projects to go from conception to inception.
The city also will be formulating stormwater and transportation plans and coordinating downtown signals.
Knight said the "Tran Plan" will look at N.E. 175th St. where the peak hour for traffic is between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. as folks apparently come into the city core for lunch or to run errands.
"Having the [Tran Plan] will help with what to do on N.E. 175th St.," she said.
Knight said the city can't make 175th one way now because it needs another north-south street between 131st and 140th Avenues to make it work. Last summer, business owners opposed a connector street in the area.
"The problem with traffic engineering is that a plan that looks good on paper may not necessarily work well in the field," said Knight. "And that's why we need citizens and business owners' input so our engineering plans meet public expectations."
She added that Woodinville may be dropped from Sound Transit (RTA) routes, but that a representative would be at the open house for residents to speak with.
The open house will be held at City Hall, 13203 N.E. 175th St. Nov. 4 from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m.