City of Yakima

Work Underway to Fix Damage Caused by Water Main Break

City of Yakima crews got started today on a project that will repair damage to a one-block section of Yakima Avenue that was caused by a water main break that occurred this past Saturday.

The first step in the repair process is for City crews to grind up and remove asphalt in most of the two westbound lanes of Yakima Avenue between 1st Street and 2nd Street as well as the parking strip on the north side of the block. Asphalt in parts of the two eastbound lanes will also be removed.

Work is scheduled to begin tomorrow to remove a one-block section of old water pipe and replace it with new pipe. An approximately 10-foot crack in a section of the old pipe, which is buried below the road surface, resulted in water flowing through the street’s subbase, across the road and the adjacent sidewalk, and even into some nearby buildings. While the cracked section of pipe was removed and replaced on Saturday, City officials have decided to replace the entire one-block section of pipe to avoid future leaks that could develop in the old pipe. Yakima-based Ken Leingang Excavating, Inc. will install the new water pipe.

Early next week, repairs to the damaged parts of Yakima Avenue will be made. The City expects to choose a contractor for the roadway repair portion of the project tomorrow. That contractor will also repair a portion of sidewalk that collapsed as a result of the break. Predicted wet weather may slow the project, but it is expected to be completed within seven to ten working days.

Businesses located on both sides of Yakima Avenue are open now and will remain open throughout the project. Because of concerns over the stability of the roadway’s subbase, Yakima Avenue between 1st Street and 2nd Street, as well as the sidewalk on the north side of Yakima Avenue, will remain closed until repairs are completed. Businesses located on the north side of Yakima Avenue can be accessed through doors located in the alley between Yakima Avenue and S Sgt. Pendleton Way.

Initial estimates indicate repairs to the roadway and sidewalk could cost up to $100,000. However, if the subbase damage is more extensive than it now appears to be, repair costs could be higher. Installation of the new water pipe will add up to $50,000 to the cost of the project. A capital fund specifically used for projects related to the water system will cover the cost of the road repairs installing the new water pipe.

Downtown Yakima Water Main Break – News Release

Irrigation System Improvements Being Made in Yakima Neighborhoods

P.O.W. Contracting, Inc., a Pasco-based construction firm, is the primary contractor for an approximately $980,000 project that will improve the irrigation system in several neighborhoods in Yakima. Work on the West Yakima Irrigation System Phase 2 Improvements project will begin on Thursday, October 30 and is expected to be completed by the start of the 2015 irrigation season next spring.

The project will improve the irrigation water delivery system in neighborhoods between Summitview Avenue to the south, Lincoln Avenue to the north, 21st Avenue to the east, and 37th Avenue to the west.

As part of the project, approximately 5,130 linear feet of new 3-inch and 4-inch high-density polyethylene (“HDPE”) pipe and approximately 7,390 linear feet of new 3-inch to 12-inch polyvinyl chloride (“PVC”) pipe will be installed. More than 200 new irrigation service connections will also be completed as part of the project.

“The new pipe will address leakage issues that we have had with the old pipe and significantly reduce the need for repairs to be made,” said Water/Irrigation Engineer Mike Shane. “Because of the improvements, the annual operating and maintenance costs will drop for that part of the irrigation system. When the project is finished, we will allow be able to provide much more reliable irrigation service in that part of the community well into the future,” said Shane.

Work on the project will begin on the part of the system north of Summitview Avenue near Cleman Avenue and North 29th Avenue. Initial operations will include directional drill installation of a new 4-inch HDPE irrigation main.

While the project is underway, construction equipment such as backhoes and dump trucks will be used. Traffic control devices will be used in the areas of construction and traffic will be routed around project areas.  Travel will periodically be restricted to one lane in each direction on Summitview Avenue through the project area. Although access may be temporarily restricted in the immediate areas of construction, access to homes in the project area will be maintained as best as possible.

Funding for the project is provided from the City’s Irrigation Capital Improvement budget.

For more information about the project, contact Water/Irrigation Engineer Mike Shane at 576-6480.

Irrigation Improvement Project – News Release

Yakima City Council Meeting Review

The Yakima City Council held a special meeting and study session on Tuesday, October 28th, 2014.

Action taken by the Council on October 28th included:

–    Modification of City’s response to a recent Federal Court ruling concerning the election process for city council members

–    Requesting additional funding options concerning refuse and recycling rates

–    Requesting additional time to prioritize 2015 Capital investment projects

–    Starting the 2015 City of Yakima budget review process

Follow this link to watch Y-PAC coverage of the October 28th Yakima City Council meeting –

The Yakima City Council special meeting/study session aired live on Charter Cable Channel 194 and replays of the meeting are also available on Y-PAC and on the City of Yakima Website –

Online Survey Will Gather Input on City Sign Regulations

The Yakima community has the opportunity to help reshape the way the City of Yakima regulates how signs are displayed by filling on an online survey.

How many signs can be displayed at a single location, where signs can be placed, and other elements of the City’s sign regulations are currently under review. The feedback gathered through the survey will provide guidance to the City Planning Commission, and ultimately the Yakima City Council, about what direction the community wants to head in when it comes to controlling signage.

The online survey will be open from Wednesday, October 29th until Wednesday, November 12th and can be accessed on the City’s website by clicking on the following link –

About two years ago, the City began to more actively enforce its existing sign regulations and received complaints from some local business owners who felt the current sign code was being imposed too strictly. During a joint study session in August of this year, the City Council and the City Planning Commission decided that conducting a survey would be a good way to encourage the community to participate in making any necessary changes to the sign regulations.

The information that is gathered through the online survey will be reviewed by the Planning Commission and will be incorporated into a recommendation the Commission will make to the City Council about potential modification of the City sign code. The Council plans on considering possible revisions to the City’s sign regulations at an upcoming public hearing.

For more information about the online community survey concerning potential changes to the City’s sign code, contact Supervising Planner Jeff Peters by phone at 575-6163 or by e-mail at

City Sign Regulations Survey – News Release

Utility Work to Close a Portion of North 35th Avenue

Installation of a water line will result in the closure of North 35th Avenue between Englewood Avenue and West Lincoln Avenue on Wednesday, October 29th. The work will begin at 7:00 am and should be completed by 3:30 pm.

Detours around the construction site will be available, but because of heavy traffic volume in the area, motorists can expect delays in the project area. Drivers should use alternate routes if possible until the work is completed.

Access to homes and businesses in the project area will be maintained as best as possible and emergency vehicles will be allowed through the project area if necessary.

As always, the schedule for this type of project is subject to change daily dependent on weather, equipment failure, and emergencies.

For more information about the project, contact Water Distribution Supervisor Emilio Lopez at 575-6196.

Utility Work on 35th Avenue – News Release

City Council Special Meeting/Study Session Preview

The Yakima City Council will hold a special agenda meeting and study session on Tuesday, October 28th, 2014. The meeting begins at 10:00 am at Yakima City Hall.

Items on the October 28th agenda include:

–   Redesign of City Council election system

–   Discussion on refuse and recycling rates

–   Presentation of 2015 Preliminary Budget

–   Capital investment funding options

To see the complete agenda for the October 28th special Council meeting and study session, click on the following link-

The Yakima City Council special meeting/study session is aired live on Charter Cable Channel 194 and replays of the meeting are also available on Y-PAC and on the City of Yakima Website –

Road Damage Caused by Water Main Break Being Assessed

It will likely take a few days to fully evaluate the extent of damage a water main break that occurred early this morning did to a downtown section of Yakima Avenue and to determine what repairs will need to be made to the roadway. Until a more complete assessment is completed, Yakima Avenue between 1st Street and 2nd Street will remain closed.

However, water service to the buildings affected by the break has now been restored.

The break in the 12-inch water main occurred under Yakima Avenue in front of Santiago’s Gourmet Mexican Restaurant and Vida Rug & Home Gallery. The break was discovered at about 5:00 am today and was responded to quickly by crews from the City of Yakima Water/Irrigation Division.

Water service to Santiago’s, Vida Rug & Home Gallery, the Wells Fargo Bank branch at 101 East Yakima Avenue, and two vacant buildings east of Vida Rug & Home Gallery was shut off while repairs to the main were made. Water service was restored to those building shortly after 2:00 pm today.

It’s likely that portions of Yakima Avenue between 1st Street and 2nd Street will need to be stabilized and repaved. How significant the street repairs will be won’t be known until soils below the roadway have a chance to dry out and settle. A section of sidewalk adjacent to where the water main break occurred has been undermined and will have to be removed and replaced.

“There will certainly be some inconvenience caused while road and sidewalk damage is more thoroughly assessed and repairs can be completed,” said Communications & Public Affairs Director Randy Beehler. “Access to the business along that one-block section of Yakima Avenue will be maintained as best as possible and the necessary repairs will be made as quickly as they can be,” said Beehler.

Although water and mud flowed across streets and sidewalks within several blocks of the break, only Vida Rug & Home Gallery appears to have suffered much water damage. Santiago’s, Wells Fargo, the nearby vacant buildings, and a Subway restaurant on the corner of 2nd Street and Yakima Avenue have reported minimal water intrusion.

“Most of the attention so far today has been focused on addressing the immediate need to repair the break in the main,” said Beehler. “The break will be fixed and water service will be turned back on later today. Then we’ll start taking a closer look at the full extent of whatever damage may have been caused by the break.”

Additional information about roadway repairs that will be needed, how long traffic in the area will be impacted, and any other effects of the water main break will be provided as it becomes available.

Downtown Yakima Water Main Break – News Release

Special Yakima City Council Meeting Scheduled for October 28th

A special meeting of the Yakima City Council has been scheduled for Tuesday, October 28th at 10:00 am so the Council can discuss its efforts to redesign its Council election system.  The redesign of the Council election system became necessary after a federal judge ruled in August that certain elements of the existing system do not provide Latino voters will adequate opportunities to participate.

The Council study session scheduled for October 28th at 10:00 am will be conducted following completion of the special meeting.

Please see the official special meeting notice below.




October 28, 2014 at 10 Am



A complete meeting agenda and other related items are posted on the City’s website at  Other locations to review this information are the Yakima Central Library and the City Clerk’s office at City Hall.  If you have questions, please contact the City Clerk’s office at (509) 575-6000. Any invocation that may be offered before the official start of the Council meeting shall be the voluntary offering of a private citizen, to and for the benefit of the Council.  The views or beliefs expressed by the invocation speaker have not been previously reviewed or approved by the Council, and the Council does not endorse the religious beliefs or views of this, or any other speaker. The City provides special accommodations, such as hearing devices, wheelchair space or language interpreters, for City meetings. Anyone needing special assistance please contact the City Clerk’s office at (509) 575-6000

October 28th Yakima City Council Special Meeting Notice


Citywide Road Resurfacing Project Paving Completed

An ambitious citywide street repaving project that began in May has reached a milestone now that all of the more than 90 lane miles of roads included in the project have been paved. All that remains for the $15 million project to be completed is work involving striping some of the last road sections that were paved, adjusting utility fixtures, finishing crosswalk placements, and wrapping up other minor finishing touches. The project was originally expected be completed by early winter and is easily on pace to do just that.

As part of the work that remains on the project, Washington Avenue between 15th Avenue and 1st Street will be closed to all traffic from 7:00 pm to 6:00 am each day from Monday, October 27th through Friday, October 31st,

Various sections of the following streets will experience periodic daytime lane closures during the week of October 27th through October 31st:

  • 6th Street between Lincoln Avenue and Pacific Avenue
  • Lincoln Avenue between 1st Street and 10th Street
  • MLK, Jr. Boulevard between 1st Street and 8th Street
  • Walnut Street between 1st Street and 7th Avenue
  • Mead Avenue between 11th Avenue and Fair Avenue
  • Washington Avenue between 15th Avenue and 1st Street

Sections of various other streets are also likely to have short-duration lane closures during the next week as final work on the resurfacing project is completed.

“This was a significant undertaking and the City sincerely thanks the Yakima community for its patience during the project,” said Communications & Public Affairs Director Randy Beehler. “There were, no doubt, moments of inconvenience for most everyone over the last few months when they were trying to get around town. Our primary contractor (Columbia Asphalt & Gravel, Inc.) and subcontractors did a very good job in minimizing the impact, and we are grateful for that,” said Beehler. “Over the past two years, almost 120 lanes miles in Yakima have been reconditioned and are now much safer to drive on and will last for many more years to come.”

For additional information regarding the grind and overlay project, contact Senior Engineer Bob Desgrosellier at 575-6228.

Grind and Overlay Project Update – News Release

Yakima City Council Meeting Review

The Yakima City Council held its most recent regular agenda business meeting on Tuesday, October 21st, 2014.

Action taken by the Council on October 21st included:

–    Approval of a six-month moratorium on new homeless shelters

–    Approval of three temporary emergency winter weather shelters

–    Directing City staff to meet with pawnbrokers, secondhand dealers and precious metal dealers concerning proposed new reporting requirements

Follow this link to watch Y-PAC coverage of the October 21st Yakima City Council meeting –

Yakima City Council regular agenda business meetings air live on Charter Cable channel 194 and are replayed at 7:00 pm the following night. The meetings are shown again at 9:00 am on the following Saturday and Sunday and are also available on the City of Yakima website –