City lands grant to fix intersection
Project will ease congestion at 30th Street and Highway 9
SNOHOMISH - The city won a competitive grant to begin design work to improve an intersection near Snohomish Station.
The $199,000 Rural Town Centers federal grant is for the intersection of 30th Street and Highway 9. The project will add a new lane for eastbound drivers on 30th Street wanting to turn right onto Highway 9 or go straight through the intersection. The existing single lane there will be dedicated to left turns onto Highway 9.
The existing configuration currently backs up traffic during rush hours, public works director Steve Schuller said.
The city estimates Snohomish Station serves approximately 80,000 people, an amount significantly greater than the city’s population.
“It’s important that all those people and all the people that call Snohomish home can get to where they want to go as quickly and as safely as possible,” Schuller said. “We don’t want commuter traffic affecting people’s ability to get through our city.”
Schuller estimates that only about two or three cars attempting a left-hand turn make it through the light during rush hour.
The grant money and city matching funds only covers the project’s design work.
Once the design work is finished, the city will solicit bids for the project’s construction. The project is estimated to be completed in 2015, Schuller said.
The city is chipping in $51,000 from its sales tax supported Transportation Benefit District fund for a total of $250,000. This quarter million will cover the entire project design.
The entire project will probably cost around $1 million.
The permitting process may take slightly longer because the city has to work with the state Department of Transportation and Snohomish County, which each own a portion of the intersection.
The Transportation Benefit District was approved by voters in 2011 as a means to support street improvements. The TBD collects two-tenths of 1 percent of local sales tax and is approved to do so for 10 years.
The tax will collect approximately $660,000 per year to support street preservation and projects two intersection improvement projects.
The TBD also provides the city leverage in competing for state and federal transportation grants.
This intersection improvement project is one of two TBD projects slated to begin this year. The other is the roundabout project at 15th Street and Avenue D.
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