Chestnut Construction Continues


Some roads have been closed to all traffic except for those people who live there.

By Forrest Hollingsworth

Construction is heavy on Chestnut Street right now and it appears it will be staying that way for a little while longer. The Ellensburg Public Works department, alongside hired consultants and contractors, is currently using money from a federal grant to get sidewalks and streets up to federal and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) standards. The project started officially on July 14 and isn’t expected to be complete until after the Ellensburg Rodeo, Labor Day weekend. According to Lee Hansen, civil engineer for the Public Works department, 86 percent of the construction on Chestnut Street (and previous construction on other roads like University Way) is funded by the federal government project that works on City Hall’s 6 year plan to keep roads and other public spaces in shape. Currently, they are remaking segments of the sidewalk on Chestnut’s 11 intersections to get them up to ADA standards, as per the requirements of the federal grant that is partially funding the project. “We know what the department wants to do, we know what the city council wants to do, and we know what the community wants,” Hansen said. Planning for the project was handled by an in-house design and specs group within Ellensburg’s government and was checked upon by hired consultants. “We have the 6 year plan and we look for federal grants that we can apply for and use to do that. I live in the city and I have an interest in maintaining everything for the people, I would want to be treated the same way,” Hansen said. The project which includes street grinding, striping and sidewalk improvements was originally slated to take 40 work days but now looks like it will take closer to 50 or 60.