City Council to hold hearing on transportation improvements

The Bellingham City Council will hold a public hearing to gather input on the 2014-2019 Transportation Improvement Program  at 7 p.m. on Monday, May 20, in the City Council Chambers.

Each year, the city is required to produce a prioritized list of capital projects needed to improve the transportation system over the next six years—consistent with the Transportation Element of the city’s Comprehensive Plan—in order to qualify for funding from federal and state agencies.

The DRAFT 2014-2019 Transportation Improvement Program lists capital improvement projects for Bellingham’s multimodal transportation network, funding sources for each project and anticipated timing of construction, if funding can be secured.

As an example, the Chestnut-Bay Bridge was added to the 2013-2018 TIP last year as an unfunded project so that Public Works staff could apply for a federal grant.  At the end of 2012, Bellingham was awarded $2,647,000 in federal funds and the project will now be constructed in 2014.

Capital improvement projects listed during the first three years of the six-year plan must be fully funded. Projects that do not have full funding, or that show unknown funding sources, must be listed as unfunded and planned for later years.

The Bellingham City Council must adopt and submit the 2014-2019 Plan to the State of Washington before July 1.

Public comment will be accepted until the council hearing on May 20. They can be sent to Chris Comeau, the city’s transportation planner, who can be reached at 360-778-7946 or ccomeau@cob.org.

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