Crosswalk delayed by holidays, snowstorm

A long-awaited construction project in Langley is set to begin its final phase on Monday after being delayed due to a series of regulatory steps and unforeseen circumstances.

For months, the unfinished crosswalks at the intersection of Second Street and Anthes Avenue have been a sore spot for citizens, who have repeatedly asked the city council about the stalled work.

Langley Public Works Director Stan Berryman said the city had been awarded a $1.2 million federal grant to pave Second and Third streets and Park and De Bruyn avenues. About 5 percent of the project included the creation of ADA-compatible crosswalks.

“It’s not that big of a job,” Berryman said about the wait. “That’s what has been somewhat frustrating.”

The project required the oversight of the state Department of Transportation. At the end of last October, WSDOT alerted the city that the designs for the crosswalks, which had previously been approved, no longer matched updated federal ADA requirements.

Langley made changes to the grade, or angle, of the ramps in its new designs for the crosswalks and submitted them to WSDOT in November. Island County served as the contracting agent for the project.

Assistant County Engineer Connie Bowers said she thinks the process has taken longer than usual but attributes the slowdown to the holidays.

“It’s a lot of agencies you’re trying to get to coordinate,” Bowers said.

She added that besides the contracting agent, there is also the contractor, SRV Construction, and the city’s consulting agent to consider.

WSDOT Communications Consultant Krista Carlson agreed.

“Each of these projects require multiple steps and oversight,” Carlson said.

Bowers said a change order for the project was submitted to the contractor in December, which sent it to the county on Jan. 13. It was then forwarded and received by WSDOT on the same day.

“Initiating a change order and completing a change order are two different things,” John Snyder, who works for SRV, said.

He recalls the month of December as being a time when the several different entities communicated back and forth about the project.

Due to staff illness and the snowstorm, Carlson said WSDOT was not able to respond to the change order until a week later, on Jan. 21. WSDOT provided comments for the county on Jan. 22, and then the next day it was approved for work to resume.

Bowers said there are 20 working days allowed on the contract and that they don’t anticipate the completion of the crosswalks to take any longer than that.

“It will be a quality job when it’s done,” Berryman said. “It’s been a long time coming.”