A ribbon cutting ceremony will take place at 11:00 am on Friday, September 2nd to mark completion of road improvements at and near the intersection of 72nd Avenue and Mead Avenue that improves safety for the neighborhood and students at two nearby schools.
The ribbon cutting will take place at the southeast corner of the parking lot of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints located at 1414 S. 72nd Avenue. Yakima City Councilmember Holly Cousens (District 7), who represents the district in which the road improvements were made, members of a neighborhood association representing an area adjacent to the 72nd and Mead intersection, and a representative of the West Valley School District will speak during the ceremony.
Concerns over the safety of students going to and from West Valley Middle School and West Valley Junior High School, both of which are located a few blocks west of the intersection, prompted the City of Yakima to apply for a federal “Safe Routes to Schools” grant. The City was awarded a $544,000 “Safe Routes to Schools” grant, which, when combined with $60,000 in City funds, paid for the $604,000 project.
The improvements include widening 72nd Avenue, installing new traffic signals and turn lanes at the 72nd Avenue and Mead Avenue intersection, and constructing new curb, gutter, and sidewalk along the south side of Zier Road from 72nd Avenue to 75th Avenue.
Yakima-based Columbia Asphalt and Gravel, Inc. served as the primary contractor for the project. Work on the project began in mid-June and was completed in late August.
“This project came about because of the persistence and continued involvement by members of the neighborhood association, parents of students at the junior high school and middle school, and representatives of the West Valley School District,” said Councilmember Cousens. “The improvements are going to have a positive impact on students, other pedestrians, and drivers. We all deserve to be proud of the commitment to safety this project represents,” said Cousens.