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Residents’ checks pay for speed bump

Street projects scheduled for the warmer weather this summer will include one project partially funded by personal checks written by South-end residents.

The city plans to add a raised crosswalk near Lakeridge Elementary School. Several residents of the Island Point Neighborhood donated money toward the construction of the speed bump and crosswalk hybrid that will be on the north side of the intersection of 84th Avenue S.E. and 80th Street.

During the first week of June, the city received 41 personal checks for a total amount of $5,000 to be applied toward the speed bump. This particular speed bump will be topped with brick as well.

The money was donated because the neighborhood pledged to contribute to the cost of the crosswalk if the city built it sooner. The city now plans to install it before school starts in the fall.

Several neighborhood meetings were held about a raised crosswalk near the school. A petition and a postcard poll done by the city also confirmed the neighborhood’s consensus to have the crosswalk.

Street improvements surrounding the South-end shopping center and off East Mercer Way will take place this summer, now that the City Council approved the $680,000 project bid.

Lakeridge Paving Co. will be re-paving and repairing the road and sidewalk on S.E. 68th Street between Island Crest Way and 84th Avenue S.E. A section of 84th Avenue directly south of 68th Street will also be worked on. Improvements will include new pavement, repairs to the sidewalk, curb repairs, the installation of new accessible curb ramps, laying new asphalt and re-striping the roads when completed. This project will begin in the coming weeks and must be completed before Labor Day, according to Clint Morris, the city’s street engineer.

Just south of the shopping center, between Island Crest Way and 84th Avenue, the contractor will repair and re-surface S.E. 71st Street. Repairs will also be made on S.E. 42nd Place, off East Mercer Way toward the North end of the Island at this time.

In addition to the resurfacing, Councilmember Mike Grady convinced the Council to direct city staff to add a bike lane on S.E. 71st Street once it is repaired. However, city engineer Patrick Yamashita told the Council that one side of street parking will be lost by doing so. The opposite side of the street will retain street parking. That project is expected to be completed by Labor Day as well. The bike lane would presumably be added shortly afterward.

Another portion of 71st Street — a small part to the east of East Mercer Way — will be getting an additional lane, making it a two-way street. A road that provides access to Secret Park, S.E. 64th Street south of 27th Street, will be re-graded and re-paved at this time as well.

The city will also get pavement repairs along portions of Island Crest Way, East and West Mercer Way and S.E. 24th Street as part of the bid. Councilmember Dan Grausz suggested, and the Council agreed, that “no parking” signs be put up along all new shoulders built on East, North and West Mercer Way.

The Mercer Island City Council had its annual summer retreat at the CCMV last Saturday. During the retreat, the Council devised an initial plan that directed city staffers to develop a capital improvement levy for the city’s parks. Other topics the Council discussed included the needs of the fire department, adding bike lanes to Island roads and how to best curtail the growing use of so-called “cigarette boats” on Lake Washington. A story covering the details of the Council’s discussions with city staff will be in the next issue of the Reporter.

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