Katie Metzger/staff photo

Katie Metzger/staff photo

Bothell plans transportation improvements

Projects include road widening and Safe Routes to School.

The Bothell City Council has been busy lately, adopting its six-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) on June 5 and reviewing its Downtown Plan Implementation on June 12.

It’s an “exciting time” for Bothell in terms of infrastructure projects, according to the city’s capital division manager, Steve Morikawa.

Cities in Washington are required to update their TIP every year before July 1. This year’s plan for Bothell lists the transportation projects the city anticipates pursuing from 2019-24. It also lists ongoing annual transportation programs such as Pavement Preservation and the Sidewalk/Walkway Program.

Grant entities require a project to be on the city’s TIP to be eligible for funding. Each project or program within the TIP is labeled to identify what category it falls under, including capacity, safety, pedestrian/bicycle and more.

The city has a few-road widening projects in the TIP, including Bothell Way from Reder Way to 240th Street Southeast and Beardslee Boulevard from the UW Bothell campus to Interstate 405, along with improvements to State Route 522.

Several new projects have been added since last year, including Safe Routes to School projects near Crystal Springs Elementary School and Woodin Elementary School, along with ADA improvements downtown and an eventual replacement of the aging 102nd Ave Northeast Bridge across the Sammamish River and SR 522.

Bothell Council voted unanimously to approve this year’s TIP, though changes will likely be made before next year as the city continues to evaluate its Capital Facilities Plan (CFP). Since 2006, the city has developed and adopted a biennial CFP, which includes all capital projects (transportation, utilities, facilities, parks) that have some funding available. It is scheduled for adoption this fall.

Another plan will also be reviewed this summer: the downtown plan and code amendments requested for the 2018 planning docket. Council had requested a study session to review progress on these items, including those listed in the recently approved housing strategy. The potential changes will be reviewed by the Planning Commission in July.

It has been more than 12 years since the city embarked on its major downtown revitalization process, and nearly nine years since the Downtown Subarea Plan and Regulations were adopted. Potential amendments this year involve open space, landmark preservation and density and zoning changes to promote affordable housing.

Transportation impact fees will also be studied. Council reviewed a proposal in March to reduce transportation impact fees for eating and drinking establishments, and some other retail uses, in the immediate area along and around Main Street, but raised concerns about whether the reduced fees would incentivize demolishing existing buildings in favor of new construction.

See www.bothellwa.gov for more.

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