We all should use our voices in Olympia

  • Saturday, January 13, 2018 1:30am
  • Opinion

With a short state legislative session under way, it’s important for the city to continue its partnerships with our elected leaders in Olympia and to clearly articulate the value of proposed state investments.

Competition is strong. The City Council and I have identified these priorities

•Railroad Overcrossings: Because it can take years to procure funding, the city first seeks design funds so we can demonstrate the kind of early progress that makes it easier to earn future construction funds. The city proposes to build an overcrossing on Grove Street from State Avenue to Cedar Avenue over the BNSF railroad tracks to increase east-west connectivity. A 2015 study found this the most suitable overcrossing location as it would not take away access to State Avenue or local business entrances, and would require minimal property acquisition. Total cost is $24 million. The city seeks $1 million in state funding for design and will provide $1 million in matching funds.

•The city also wants to build a railroad overcrossing on 156th Street NE west of I-5. Together with the future I-5 interchange at 156th, this would provide efficient traffic flow for people traveling west of the freeway to housing and commercial developments. The city seeks $1 million in state funding for design. •The new Highway 529 interchange is fully funded with construction slated to begin in 2019. That will provide the first grade-separated alternative for Marysville travelers to avoid train traffic. Adding new overcrossings at Grove Street and 156th Street would bring real relief with train-free options in north, central and south Marysville.

•Arlington-Marysville Manufacturing Industrial Center: The city, together with Arlington, seeks official designation by the Puget Sound Regional Council of the MIC as a recognized Regional Manufacturing Industrial Center.

•Ebey Waterfront Trail and Shoreline Access Project: The city now seeks $500,000 to fund design of expanded park property along the waterfront and the remaining segment of the Ebey Waterfront Trail.

These are the kinds of recreational, cultural and economic investments that truly make a difference in the quality of life for Marysville residents and visitors. I urge you to contact your elected representatives to offer support for these city projects.

Jon Nehring is the mayor of Marysville. His column runs each month.

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