View All Posts

Apr 09

Mayor's Update: Federal Funding for Transportation Infrastructure Projects - Friday, April 9

Posted on April 9, 2021 at 2:07 PM by Joshua Stecker

Neighbors, friends, and business owners - four crucial transportation infrastructure projects are looming for the City of Gig Harbor and are in line for federal funding under the 2022 Community Project Funding Program.

The Burnham Drive / SR 16 and Wagner / Wollochet projects potentially impact access and safety for our growing community.

To show your support, you can download the templates for letters of support and sign and return to the City for inclusion in the project's support statement. These letters will be reviewed by Congressman Derek Kilmer's office.

You can scan and email your signed support letters to communications@gigharborwa.gov; or fax to 253-851-8563. Letters received before Friday, April 16, 2021 will be included in the City's submission.

Please direct any questions to communications@gigharborwa.gov.

About the Burnham Drive/SR16 Roundabout Metering Project 
This project provides critical transportation improvements for residential and commercial developments, including our regional hospital, St. Anthony's. The roundabout helps to manage future traffic, which is anticipated to reach maximum capacity and traffic volume soon. This project will also help to avoid more costly and disruptive future interchange improvements.

Without this project, congestion will occur from the higher level of traffic, and there is an increased chance of high-speed rear-end collisions for drivers slowing down from the westbound SR16 off-ramp to accommodate stopped traffic and congestion. This project will install an automated but complex traffic management system that has been shown to reduce congestion and improve safety.

SR 16 is one of the major freight corridors in Washington State as well as the gateway to the Olympic Peninsula for commuters and travelers, with a direct connection to Interstate-5. A 2019 corridor study by WSDOT and the Federal Highway Administration made almost 80 improvement recommendations for this stretch. Final design, permitting and construction would happen in 2022.

Download Burnham Drive/SR16 Roundabout Metering Project Support Letter
 
About the Wagner Way/Wollochet Drive Intersection Improvements
With Gig Harbor's significant growth, the last ten years have seen a 59% increase in single-family homes across the entire city, with a good of that growth occurring within a ½ mile of this intersection.

The current intersection doesn't allow for pedestrians or bikers to cross this busy arterial roadway. All of this residential and commercial growth uses this intersection in order to gain access to and from SR-16 and downtown Gig Harbor.

This project would install a traffic signal, pedestrian crossing signal, ADA improvements, street lighting, stormwater treatment, and detention improvements, and connect the new signals to WSDOT's signals at the SR16 intersection and the City’s existing signal at the intersection of Wollochet / Hunt.

This would improve safety, reduce congestion, and improve comfort for pedestrians, bicyclists, and others between these rapidly developing residential and commercial areas and SR-16, downtown, and the Gig Harbor waterfront. Final design, permitting, property acquisition, and construction would happen in 2022.

Download Wagner Way/Wollochet Drive Intersection Improvements Support Letter

About the Gig Harbor 38th Avenue Improvement Project, Phase 2
This project has been listed on the City’s transportation improvement program (TIP) for many years. We are seeking funding under the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee (T&I) Member Designated Project program.

Currently, residents ride bicycles or walk on narrow dirt paths along the busy 38th Avenue arterial. Residents have been asking for decades to improve safety along this corridor by placing bicycle lanes and sidewalks to connect a residential area to the large commercial area to the east and two public schools to the south. The City is currently improving this corridor to the south up to the two public schools as part of the 38th Avenue Improvement Project, Phase 1A.

Phase 2 would redesign the roadway to add bicycle lanes on both sides, sidewalks on one side, a landscaped buffer next to the sidewalk, curbs, and gutters as necessary, sewer and storm improvements, street illumination, on-street parking where room exists, and turn pockets, as necessary. This is primarily along 56th Street to Hunt Street. This work will use low-impact design for stormwater management to treat stormwater and minimize stormwater runoff.

The project goals are to improve safety and level of comfort for all ages to use non-motorized transportation between the residential areas, commercial areas, and two public schools, and improve walkability and bike-ability in this area.

Download 38th Avenue Improvement Project Phase 2 Support Letter

About the Burnham Drive Improvement Project
Currently, Gig Harbor residents ride bicycles or walk along narrow dirt paths on Burnham Drive, a busy arterial connecting a major residential and commercial district (including a public middle school) to the City’s primary recreational trail that runs through the city, and a highway interchange (SR16).

Through City planning, opportunities have been identified for major improvements to improve non-motorized transportation on this corridor.

The City is currently in the design and permitting process to install a small sub-section of this plan (Phase 1A). This project would occur in 2022 and include a concrete multi-use path for both pedestrians and bicyclists on one side, a landscaped buffer next to the path, curbs, gutters, sewer and storm improvements, street illumination, on-street parking (where room exists), and turn pockets as necessary -- focused on the portion of the road from N. Harborview Drive to Harbor Hill Drive. This work will use low-impact design for stormwater management to treat stormwater and minimize stormwater runoff.

Download Burnham Drive Improvement Project Support Letter

Thanks for your support,

Mayor Kit Kuhn