City to review new alternative ‘D’ for Pt. Brown

A new redesign of the proposed project to add sidewalks, bike/pedestrian lanes, crosswalks and other features to Point Brown Avenue from the city gates to Chance a la Mer will be unveiled to the City Council for its first formal review on Monday.

Public Works Director Nick Bird said the redesign will be known as Alternative D. The council last year voted down the previous preferred alternatives and asked for plans that were less expensive, with sidewalks and parking that better followed existing business and commercial uses.

The city has a grant for the design work, being done by design consultant Debra Seeman of David Evans and Associates, but funding for construction has yet to be secured. The federal grant funds for design, however, would have to be refunded if the city does not begin construction within a 10-year period.

The original design proposal would have created ADA accessible shared-use sidewalks on both sides of the roadway, bike lanes, lighted pedestrian crossings, on-street parking, pedestrian and street illumination, storm water collection and treatment, and two roundabouts. The total cost had been estimated to be $15.4 million under the initial design proposal.

Bird acknowledged he was concerned about some of the up-front costs of Alternative D. “Our approach has been to minimize the construction costs, but what we have done is deferred those construction costs to other phases that we don’t have the money for,” he said.

To proceed, the city might have to spend more money up front for those potential costs, according to Bird. “That’s what everybody is trying to avoid,” he said.

As of last year, the city had $742,750 in grant contributions, including $59,400 from Grays Harbor County, as well as $54,000 in city matching funds.

The Pt. Brown Sidewalk Project was initiated by the city in 2013 “to provide a safe non-motorized environment within the downtown area of Ocean Shores.” Additional information about the project can be found on the City’s website at www.osgov.com, specifically under FilePro Direct / Public Works Dept Resources / Project Information / Pt. Brown Sidewalks. Questions and comments can be directed to Nick Bird at (360) 940-7542 or nbird@osgov.com.