City, county officials expect minimal impact from road projects this summer

Following a busy year of road construction, leaders with the City of Sequim and Clallam County expect a much quieter and smoother transition for locals and visitors this summer on local roads.

In Sequim city limits, pavement preservation projects of chip sealing and hot asphalt work continue the city’s efforts through its Transportation Benefit District. Its two-tenths of 1 percent sales tax funds transportation improvement projects and goes before city voters this November for a 10-year renewal at the same rate.

This summer, the district funds a contract with Ridgefield’s Sierra Santa Fe Corporation for $270,674 plus a 10 percent contingency to chip seal about 40,000 square yards of selected city streets.

Sequim city councilors unanimously approved the contract, which was the lowest of three bids, on May 26.

Roads set for chip sealing include: the city’s portion of River Road south of U.S. Highway 101, East Silberhorn Road (east of Falcon Road-South Seventh Avenue), South Seventh Avenue (East Silberhorn Road-West McCurdy Road), and a large neighborhood between East Fir Street and East Washington Street, and North Brown Road and North Sunnyside Avenue.

Sequim City Engineer Matt Klontz said South Seventh Avenue’s portion has a Pavement Condition Index, a quality algorithm used by engineers for roads, of 26 out of 100, one of the lowest in the city.

The River and Silberhorn Roads intersection will close for a few days during construction with detours in place. The purpose, Klontz said, is to “make provisions on the shoulders for stormwater to infiltrate better” and stop flooding in the wintertime.

Chip sealing will tentatively begin in August but it’s possible to begin sooner, he said.

Clallam County officials plan to help with chip sealing, too.

Ross Tyler, Clallam County engineer, said they have no major construction projects in the Sequim area this year but its Sequim maintenance crews will help chip seal some of the city’s roads.

City staff said Sierra Santa Fe’s bid was lower than expected by nearly $50,000 less than the city’s estimate for chip sealing. Klontz said this frees up about $100,000 in Transportation Benefit District funds for hot asphalt projects in preparation for future chip sealing projects next year.

Work on the hot asphalt could tentatively begin in late August/early September after it goes out to bid this month.

In his report, Klontz stated chip sealing costs a fraction of asphalt overlay and extends roadways’ lifespans by seven-10 years.

Park pickleball, sidewalks

New sidewalks along North Blake Avenue by Carrie Blake Community Park are set for “substantial completion” by the end of this week, Klontz said.

They’re being constructed by Interwest Construction for up to $217,000 with Transportation Benefit District dollars.

The nearby park’s new pickleball courts tentatively look to be complete by the end of June, too, he said.

Pickleball players raised a large sum towards construction costs up to nearly $228,000, also by Interwest.

The city’s other sizable road project, rebuilding Fir Street from Sequim Avenue to Fifth Avenue, isn’t expected to begin until early 2019.

For more on the City of Sequim’s pavement preservation projects, call Sequim Public Works at 360-683-4908.

Reach Matthew Nash at