Rendition of the intersection at Main Avenue South and South Second Street after construction. (COURTESY PHOTO)

Partial closure at Main Avenue South intersection passes

City Council passed a resolution for a partial closure, rather than a full closure, at the intersection.

The Main Avenue South project is taking yet another turn.

Renton City Council has decided to take an alternative route for the project to converting Main Avenue South to a two-way street. The new option won’t completely close the intersection at Main Avenue South and South Second Street, and it is hoped the project will be more favorable to affected businesses.

The council passed a resolution on Monday authorizing a partial intersection closure on Main Avenue South and South Second Street, rather than a two month full closure.

Initial detour

At the March 13 Committee of the Whole meeting, Public Works Department officials said the initial four phase plan that totaled 95 working days of construction would take up to 181 days to complete. Public Works came up with an alternative proposal, one that would require a full closure of the key intersection for up to two months, and the closing down of all but one westbound lane on Bronson Way South heading to South Second Street.

Council members raised concerns on how this proposal would affect local businesses and the Fire Station No. 11.

While the city was able to work with the fire station to come up with a favorable solution that would not impede response time, business owners were less than pleased with this proposal.

At the March 13 council meeting, GHY Bikes owner A.J. Johnson said his business saw a 27 percent dip in sales during 2015-2016 summer, and had he known about the full-closure plan ahead of time, he would not have renewed his lease at 230 Main Ave S.

New route

On March 20, Public Works came up with a half-street closure option after the council urged them to reconsider the full closure plan since it negatively impacted businesses.

The first phase of the new plan focuses on the east side of the intersection, keeping two lanes leading from Bronson Way South to South Second Street open, as well as one southbound lane on Main Avenue South open.

The second phase of the construction would take place on the west side of the intersection, and would have one southbound lane on Main Avenue South and two lanes from Bronson Way South to South Second Street open. There will be no westbound access on South Second Street.

The third phase will zone in on the northwest region of the intersection, and will allow a single lane from Bronson Way South to South Second Street, as well as keep Main Avenue South open. A small section of construction, north of the intersection, will also be incorporated into this phase.

“It took a little bit to figure because it’s a sizable project,” said Councilman Armondo Pavone. “But in the end, it’s going to be a better, elegant solution for traffic… also for the businesses to stay open and maintain their operation.”

At what cost

This half-street closure option, totaling up to three months, will cost an additional $90,000. The two-month full-closure option would have cost the city an additional $18,000, and the initial plan, which the contractor predicted would take up to 181 working days, would have cost an additional $380,000.

While partial closure allows more access to businesses near the intersection, Nancy Cejudo, owner of Ben’s Loans, located at 1005 South Second Street, said she’s still concerned about the construction.

“Our concerns are whether people can get in and out, and not have a negative experience,” she said. “People don’t want to go anywhere there’s construction. If you went shopping, would you rather go somewhere there’s construction or go to another place that has the same stuff?”

More in News

A young girl holds up a ‘Don’t Pollute I Live Here’ sign in the crowd during the Youth Climate Strike at Cal Anderson Park on Friday, March 15, 2019 in Seattle, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
King County builds blueprint for health, climate change

The plan will inform how the Board of Health addresses climate change-related health issues.

Man and his mother indicted in suspected firearms trafficking schemes at Renton business

First Western Washington cases prosecuted under ‘Project Guardian’ initiative to combat gun crime.

Holiday lights glow in Renton

Photos by Kayse Angel. The Christmas Tree Lighting and Laser Light Show… Continue reading

Photo by Haley Ausbun. The new red light camera at the Benson Drive and South Puget Drive intersection had the highest citations in the region, in 2018.
Renton gets red-light camera numbers wrong

A news report shows a higher number of collisions in 2018

July’s Monroe earthquake is informing plans for future danger

Gathered by lucky accident, data from the 4.6-magnitude quake could help assess bigger hazards.

Turtles tagged with bright swastikas were spotted at Gene Coulon Memorial Park Beach on Tuesday. Courtesy photo Mindy Doty.
Turtles tagged with swastikas prompt rally against hate in Renton

“We hope as a community people will show up and strongly say this isn’t OK.”

Courtesy of VFW Post 9430
                                Left to right: VFW Department of Washington Jr. Vice Commander Chad Hassebroek, Buffalo Soldier, life member of Skyway VFW Post 9430 and current post Guard Clyde Robinson, post Auxiliary President Cheryl Scheeler and post Cmdr. Larry Weldon.
A humble thank you for a life of honor

Buffalo Soldier presented honor quilt for Veterans Day

Photo by Haley Ausbun. Girl Scouts from troops 46754, 41126 and 41170 put together 400 sandwhich lunches on Saturday, Nov. 9 as part of Vision House “kids serve” event. The lunches then went to people experiencing homelessness in Seattle via Union Gospel Mission Search and Rescue.
Scouts work to help homeless in Renton, Seattle

Vision House welcomes troop volunteers over the weekend

Most Read