AI-3690       12.            
City Council Agenda
Meeting Date: 05/21/2013  
Subject: Federal Grant Acceptance: SR161\Meridian Corridor Sidewalk Curb Ramps and Pedestrian Signal Upgrades
Presenter: Mark Palmer
Department: Public Works

Information
Recommended Action
Accept a Federal STP (Surface Transportation Program) grant in the amount of $5,000 for the planning phase of the SR161/Meridian Corridor Sidewalk Curb Ramps and Pedestrian Signal Upgrades project.
Background
The project is located along the SR161/Meridian corridor between Stewart Avenue and 10th Avenue SE. The purpose of the project is to improve the existing non-motorized infrastructure by designing and re-constructing existing sidewalk curb ramps that do not meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards, adding bicycle racks, and upgrading signalized intersections to include Accessible Pedestrian Signals (APS). Accessible pedestrian signals are devices which communicate information about the WALK and DON’T WALK intervals at signalized intersections in non-visual formats for the benefit of pedestrians who are blind or who have low vision.The project would significantly improve the accessibility and safety for pedestrians accessing downtown Puyallup and specific locations including the Washington State Fair, the Sound Transit station, City Hall, Pioneer Park, and the library.
 
Every September, the Washington State Fair attracts over 1.2 million people resulting in thousands of pedestrians (including disabled pedestrians in wheelchairs and kids in strollers) accessing the Meridian corridor. Year-round, major events at the fairgrounds also result in thousands of additional pedestrians using this corridor. The existing Sounder station in downtown Puyallup is one of the busiest stations in the region, with over 830 riders per day (this number is projected to increase to up to 2,000 by the year 2030). The Sounder station along with the seasonal Farmer's Market, Pioneer Park, commercial businesses, nearby schools, and the library result in significant number of pedestrians along the Meridian corridor.

A total of 62 curb ramps exist in this corridor. Due to funding constraints, approximately 30 curb ramps will be upgraded under Phase 1 and the remaining will be upgraded under Phase 2. This first phase of the project will establish a plan for prioritizing the upgrading of the ramps. Field visits will be conducted to determine if any low-cost modifications can be done to any of the ramps to meet current standards.
 
Along with upgrading sidewalk curb ramps, the project would also upgrade six traffic signals at Stewart, Main, Meeker, Pioneer, 7th Avenue SE, and 9th Avenue SE, to accommodate countdown pedestrian signal heads and accessible pedestrian signals for blind pedestrians. This planning phase of the project will document all the signal infrastructure needs to make these improvements.
Previous Actions (Discussions/Presentations)
On July 17, 2012, the City Council held a public hearing on the City's Revised Six-Year Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) for 2013-2018, which included citywide safety improvements such as pedestrian signals and curb ramp upgrades. This project is item number 7 on the adopted 2013-2018 TIP (summary attached).
Summary of Proposal
Under this proposal, the City Council will accept a Federal STP grant in the amount of $5,000 for the planning phase of the SR161/Meridian Corridor Sidewalk Curb Ramps and Pedestrian Signal Upgrades project. Matching funds for this project will be provided by LIFT Grant monies in the amount of $3,000.
Alternatives/Options
Council could choose not to accept the grant at this time; however, there is no guarantee that such funds would be available in the future. The planning phase of the project is being approved as part of a contingency set of projects due to changes in how FHWA administers federal funds. Future phases totalling $410,000 in federal grant funding may be approved at a later date.

Attachments
SR161 Curb Ramp Upgrades_Vicinity Map
2013-2018 Six Year TIP