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City of Kenmore reacts to stolen flags, takes extra safety measures

Flowers were laid at the crosswalk on 61st and 190th in Kenmore in honor of Caleb Shoop, who was hit on his bicycle in March. - Sarah Kehoe, Bothell/Kenmore Reporter
Flowers were laid at the crosswalk on 61st and 190th in Kenmore in honor of Caleb Shoop, who was hit on his bicycle in March.
— image credit: Sarah Kehoe, Bothell/Kenmore Reporter

Around 40 flags out of 100, that a Kenmore girl scout troupe put reflective stickers on and set out at several Kenmore crosswalks, are missing.

"We're having a 40 percent loss rate from flags we installed last month," Kenmore City Manager Rob Karlinsey said. "We don't know how they are being lost or if they are being stolen. We will keep replenishing them and we have our right-of-way inspector routinely going to crosswalks and making sure they have the appropriate amount of flags."

Karlinsey reported at the May 19 city council meeting that the city has been hard at work to implement new safety measures for pedestrians and bicyclists on crosswalks.

"The rechannelization and restriping of 61 Avenue Northeast should happen in June, weather and contractor schedules permitting," Karlinsey said.

Karlinsey noted the crosswalk on 615 Avenue Northeast at Northeast 190th Street will move northward about 200 feet so that a pedestrian refuge island, with a Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacon (RRFB), can be installed. This relocation of the crosswalk will happen sometime after the restriping. When the crosswalk gets relocated, the existing crosswalk striping on 61 Avenue Northeast at Northeast 190th Street will be ground out.

"Other things we are studying still are lights for nighttime around our crosswalks and we are still studying speeds on arterials to see if we can lower speed limits," Karlinsey said. "Right now, we have 35 mile per hour speed limits, but we want to do speed studies to see if we can reduce those further."

King County is also planning to relocate the crosswalk on Juanita Drive at Northeast 160 Street around 200 feet to the north, to be able to add a pedestrian refuge island with an RRFB.

"I have also asked them to design in and cost out a sidewalk connection on the east side of Juanita between Northeast 160th Street and where the new crosswalk will go," Karlingsey said. "Relocation of the crosswalk at Northeast 160th Street will likely take place this summer after the Juanita Drive asphalt overlay is completed. In the meantime, if the RRFBs arrive prior to the asphalt overlay, we will install the RRFBs at the current Northeast 160th Street location and then move the RRFBs when the crosswalk gets relocated."

Karlingsey said the city has also directed King County to design a new striping plan for Simonds Road and they expect to show the public this plan next month.

The traffic engineer at King County has also completed a four-way stop warrant analysis for the intersection at Northeast 181st Street and 67th Avenue Northeast.

"Based on the data, he believes the intersection meets warrants for a four-way stop, so we should be installing a four-way stop later this year," Karlinsey said. "King County has ordered the RRFBs and we expect them to arrive by mid-June. Installation of the RRFBs should be soon thereafter."

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