The Edgewood community is benefiting from a collaborative effort by both public and private sector infrastructure investments. Some of the improvement plans were developed prior to the City's incorporation in 1996, such as the Washington State Department of Transportation's SR 161 widening project (construction commenced October 2011). Other improvements have come to life through requests from property owners, such as the Sewer LID No. 1, which laid the framework for development and greater use of the properties along the City's commercial corridor.
Sewer . . .
Commercial development is now more viable due to the installation of the City's first sewer infrastructure which was paid for through a Local Improvement District (LID) made up of properties in the sewer LID boundary.
There is strong support from Meridian Corridor property owners and local elected officials to advance growth and commercial development in the City. The City received a $20 million USDA loan for the LID project. The first connections to the new sewer system were made available during the 2nd quarter of 2011. This paved the way for development to begin - the first new commercial business to be constructed after the sewer infrastructure was installed was a Les Schwab store on Meridian. See the Sewer Project LID No. 1 Zoning Map for more detailed information regarding zoning as it relates to sewer availability. This $21 million project was a critical step in bringing businesses to Edgewood. The sewer system along Meridian Avenue can accommodate approximately 3,000 new single-family equivalent sewer connections along its approximately 2 miles and 340 acres.
WSDOT SR 161/Meridian Avenue East Widening Project . . .
The Washington State Department of Transportation held a groundbreaking ceremony in September 2011 for a $11.9 million widening project that will expand the existing 3-lane highway to 5 lanes.
Traffic volumes along the SR 161 corridor in Edgewood used to be one through lane each direction with a center turn lane resulted in congestion, delays and collisions. This Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) project improves safety and eases congestion by adding lanes and managing access. The $20,000,000 project has resulted in improved mobility and safety benefits to motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians traveling SR 161 through Edgewood's commercial corridor.
Improvements included adding 2 through-lanes in each direction from 24th Street to Milton Way (approximately 2 miles), as well as sidewalks, decorative street and pedestrian lighting lighting, curb and gutter, pedestrian seating and 4-foot shoulders to accommodate bicycles, decorative intersection crosswalks and 10-foot wide sidewalks with . The project added gateway signs, letting people know that they are now in Edgewood. Additionally, access points (driveways) to the highway have been consolidated and defined. A new traffic signal was built at the intersection with 16th Street. The final facility has five lanes (two through lanes each direction plus a center turn lane), with paved shoulders, curbs and sidewalks on both sides. Four foot wide planter strips are between the curb and sidewalks. The sidewalks will allow for pedestrian shopping, as store fronts will be closer to the road than parking. Pedestrian shoppers have more opportunity to socialize with their neighbors and enter businesses that they may not have if they were driving by. Plantings, awnings and other amenities help to create a friendly and enjoyable home town/main street shopping experience.
Jovita Boulevard Realignment Project . . .
This $5.2 million project is funded by the Traffic Improvement Board (TIB) to improve traffic flow and business access, increase safety and decrease congestion along SR 161/Meridian Avenue East - Edgewood's Commercial Corridor. Edgewood partnered with the City of Milton on a traffic improvement project that realigned the intersection of Jovita Boulevard at Meridian Avenue/SR 161 to the north with Emerald street in Milton. The City has received funding from the Washington State Traffic Improvement Board (TIB) for the project. Engineering and design will commenced in November of 2012, and construction began in 2013.
Interurban Trail and Jovita Crossroads Trailhead Park . . .
Construction of the first segment of Edgewood's portion of the regional Tacoma - Everett non-motorized trail was completed in 2012. This $1.4 million project includes a unique Jovita Crossroads Trailhead Park. Construction of future phases will depend on grant funding. Upon completion, Edgewood's segment of the trail will connect the cities of Milton and Pacific, closing a major gap in this important link to the Puget Sound trails system.
From Tacoma to Everett, cities and counties are adding their segments of a trail that runs along the same rail bed as the Puget Sound Electric Railway used, which made its last run in December 1923. Safe trails and non-motorized transportation corridors are an important element of community life, both for improving the healthy lifestyles and for decreasing the environmental impact by reducing automobile emissions. Many cyclists and pedestrians have long-awaited this important recreation and transportation corridor. The connection to the west brings users near SR 161 at Military road, where Edgewood's Commercial Corridor begins. This segment of our project ends at 114th Avenue East near Jovita Boulevard - the main east-west route from SR 167 to I-5 and SR 161. Phase II of the project will continue the trail down to the City of Pacific at West Valley Highway and will connect to Pacific's portion of the Interurban Trail.
Planned 36th & Meridian Community Park . . .
When constructed, the facilities will include a baseball field, basketball court, two tennis courts, a soccer field, parking, restrooms, picnic areas, tot lot and playground, walking trails, a water feature "splash park" and a small amphitheater.
In 2005, the City purchased an 18-acre parcel of land on the northeast corner of Meridian and 36th Street from the Puyallup School District with the intend of constructing a multi-use community park. The location will be a great monument as you enter southern gateway to the City's commercial corridor.
The City Council accepted the master plan in 2007. Themaster plan was developed by a landscape architect consultant who worked closely with a citizen ad hoc committee, City Council and staff, and the community through public input at open house community meetings
An $8.8 million bond measure to construct the park was placed on the ballot in 2008, however it did not pass, possibly due to the beginning signs of the economic downturn. It is expected that at some point after the economy stabilizes and both civic and personal budgets recover, the Council will again entertain thoughts of taking the bond measure before Edgewood citizens. The City will aggressively pursue grant funding and support from the region to help with the cost of construction.
Edgewood's New Civic Center . . .
Edgewood's unique heritage has driven the planning of the City's Town Center, which is the heart of Edgewood, along the Meridian Corridor. Many attributes of the planned Town Center will be designed to incorporate subtle nuisances on the windmill and barn theme to perpetuate Edgewood's rural heritage. The Civic Center property is located in the heart of the Town Center near the intersection of 24th Street East and Meridian Avenue East. The Civic Center/City Hall building was designed to capture the rural culture by incorporating barn features with a modern style.
A barn estimated to be from the 1920's era is located on the Civic Center property and will remain as a reminder that Edgewood was founded on agriculture. Plans are being laid to move the landmark Nyholm Windmill across Meridian to the the Civic Center property. Although rural at heart, the Edgewood community is ready to embrace new development along its commercial corridor.
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