ARLINGTON – A new Arlington Valley Road that just received a $50,000 state grant would spur economic growth, city leaders say.
The roadway’s completion would provide access to new industrial and manufacturing sites in the Arlington/Marysville Manufacturing and Industrial Center south of the city, enabling high-tech jobs to be added in an area that is already a major contributor to the city’s economic growth.
The project would provide a three-lane roadway between 204th Street NE and 67th Avenue, on the east side of the business park, allowing easier access between manufacturers, enabling future development of open industrial land and an easier connection to Highway 9, Public Works Director James Kelly said.
“Transportation of goods and employees is a major focus of our businesses. MicroGreen, a plastics manufacturer of InCycle cups made from recycled water bottles, expressed their feelings that the Arlington Valley Road project was one of the key factors in their decision to plan a major expansion here in Arlington,” Mayor Barbara Tolbert said.
The project was part of the city’s 2005 comprehensive plan but the recession sidelined it until this year.
“We already have a major concentration of manufacturers and industries within that area but we need improved access to attract new tenants,” City Administrator Paul Ellis said. “We’re also working on developing the 23-acre site previously used by Northwest Hardwoods, which closed during the recession, by developing sites for smaller industrial and commercial businesses.”
Kelly said the completed roadway also would provide access to a 100-acre section of the city’s manufacturing center, allowing truck and freight movements to be concentrated within the industrial park rather than on city thoroughfares.
With the nearby Boeing Co.’s economic stimulus for the area, Arlington expects 70 percent of the area’s job growth will be in advanced industrial manufacturing, aerospace-related industries and other high-tech industries that provide family wage jobs, Tolbert said.Design and planning for the project was spurred by a $50,000 grant from the Washington State Community Economic Revitalization Board. More construction funding also is being sought, which could launch work on the three-quarter-mile roadway some time in 2016, aided by a grant from the Puget Sound Regional Council and the city’s transportation improvement funds.
Arlington Valley Road would extend 74th Avenue NE southward from 204th St. NE to connect with 191 Place NE, which connects to 67th Avenue NE, a major north-south arterial into Arlington.