The Sunnyside City Council voted unanimously last night in favor of a resolution authorizing the city’s 2014-19 transportation improvement plan.
The plan includes 16 projects, down from an initial 22 projects, according to Superintendent of Public Works Shane Fisher. The projects are prioritized according to need and include estimated costs and time frames to start the projects.
“Most cities have 10 or 12 projects on their six-year plan, we had 22,” said Fisher. “We combined a few, tightened up the plans and got it down to 16 projects.”
The first four projects have already been funded and planned. They include the downtown revitalization plan, improvements to Sixth Street north of downtown and improvements on Yakima Valley Highway.
Fisher said the other 12 projects are hoped to be completed in the next six years, and include more improvements to Yakima Valley Highway, a traffic signal at Ninth Street and Edison Avenue, ramps to meet Americans with Disabilities Act requirements on sidewalks citywide, a bridge replacement and various improvements to other local streets.
Councilwoman Theresa Hancock said that the project involving the installation of more ADA ramps was good to see. Councilman Jason Raines concurred, saying that he has seen people in wheelchairs using traffic lanes because the city sidewalks are not accessible.
Fisher said the project for ADA ramps was left fairly vague due to the difficulty of getting funding for intersections in residential areas. The city plans to concentrate on the downtown areas.
Deputy Mayor Don Vlieger and Mayor Jim Restucci both went on record to thank Fisher for the work involved in creating the updated plan.