Thurston County Connection Newsletter
Thurston County Connection
Thurston County Connection
September, 2014
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Back-to-School Safety 101:

Hope for the Bestů..Prepare for the Worst!

Telephone Alerts Available for Flooding Hazards

The War on Food Waste

Little Red School House Drive a Big Success!

A Herd of Folks at the Thurston County Fair

Making it in the Dry Years

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 Bridging the Gap Project: Take Two!

A Pedestrian-bike path for the Martin Way overpass.

On August 3, Thurston County began work on the second phase of the Bridging the Gap project, the construction of three bridges that will link the Chehalis-Western Trail with the Woodland Trail and I-5 Bike Trail. The middle leg of the project is construction of a bridge over Martin Way between Sleater-Kinney and Lilly roads that will enable trail users to safely cross a very busy road.

The trail between 26th Avenue and the south side of I-5 is closed through construction, which is expected to be completed next spring. Project work also requires lane closures on Martin Way, which will be announced beforehand to the media and the public. Bike lanes and sidewalks will also be closed during some phases of construction.

The first bridge, spanning I-5, was opened for foot and bike travel in February, 2007. Construction of the third bridge, spanning Pacific Avenue, is expected to begin in early 2011. Once completed, the three bridges will link the northern and southern sections of the Chehalis-Western Trail in addition to linking the 22-mile north/south corridor with the 14-mile Yelm-to-Tenino Trail and the 12-mile Woodland Trail.

On June 6, Third District Congressman Brian Baird, Thurston County Commissioners Sandra Romero and Karen Valenzuela, and other local officials participated in a groundbreaking ceremony for the bridge project. Congressman Baird, a strong advocate for the regional trail system, secured $3.5 million for the Bridging the Gap project in 2005, while Commissioner Romero helped secure state funding for the project when she was a State Representative in 2003.

"This project is vitally important on many levels," says Commissioner Romero. "It encourages a safe, healthy, walkable community, while encouraging other forms of non-motorized transportation. The trail system is also great for the environment because more people are using it to commute to work, thereby reducing our carbon footprint."

Bridging the Gap partners include the Thurston Regional Planning Council (TRPC), Lacey, Olympia, Thurston County, the Washington State Department of Transportation, and private property owners adjacent to the project. Community supporters include the Woodland Trail Greenway Association, the Capitol Bicycling Club, the Wanderers and Capitol Volkssport.

For complete details on the project, contact the Public Works Department at 754-4580.

In the first photo left to right- Tumwater Mayor Pro-tem Pete Kmet, County Commissioner Karen Valenzuela, Olympia Mayor Doug Mah, Lacey Mayor Graeme Sackrison, County Commissioner Sandra Romero and Third District Congressman Brian Baird.

By Keith Eisner

Dishing the dirt on the new overpass. Dishing the dirt on the new overpass.

One of the overpass supports goes up. One of the overpass supports goes up.