This project will provide an alternative river crossing transportation corridor, for both motorized and non-motorized users, to connect the growing neighborhood of Terrace Heights to the City of Yakima. This will be done through the construction of new roadway, sidewalks, a shared-use path, a bridge over the Yakima River, a bridge over the Roza Canal Wasteway #2, and two bridges to carry Interstate 82 (I-82) traffic over the proposed East-West Corridor roadway. This will relieve congestion along Yakima Avenue and at other intersections in the city. The corridor's western terminus will begin with the improvements on H Street in the City of Yakima and continue eastward under I-82 and across the Yakima River. Eventually, there will be access to I-82 from the new corridor as part of the I-82 Modifications project. The project's eastern terminus will be at the eastern bank of the Roza Canal Wasteway #2 in the Terrace Heights Neighborhood where it will connect with Yakima County's eastern-most phase of the corridor. The new corridor will open up opportunity for new public transit routes, improved emergency response times, and non-vehicular transportation.
The East-West Corridor project will involve substantial improvements to the Yakima River floodplain to mitigate for the new bridge. Floodplain restoration efforts will include levee setbacks, removal of non-native vegetation, re-vegetation with native woody species, installation of habitat structures, woody debris, and backchannel creation. The floodplain restoration work will help prevent flood damage to properties adjacent to the river as well as improve salmon habitat. The photo to the left shows the extent of the Yakima River flood in May of 2011.
Throughout the planning process of this project it has been important that we hear input from the local community. Public outreach for this project started with the initial alignment studies back in 2010. Public meetings in Yakima occurred on May 6, June 9, September 29, and November 16, 2010. In these meetings, personnel representing the design team, Yakima County, and the City of Yakima discussed the four proposed alignments for the East-West Corridor. Attendees of these meetings were asked to leave contact information if they wanted to be kept informed of project updates through mailed or emailed notices. The meetings on June 9 and November 16 had a public comment period where attendees could write their thoughts on the proposed alignments, and the project as a whole. These comments were addressed in Appendix J of the August 2011 Alignment Study.
In the fall of 2011 a notice was sent out asking for public comments responding to the August 2011 Alignment Study to be submitted to the Yakima County Public Services Department by October 15, 2011. An open-house meeting was also held October 25, 2011 with representatives from the design team, Yakima County, and the City of Yakima to discuss the alignment study. Following initial discussions about the project, attendees at the meeting were invited to ask questions or make comments about the alignment study and the project as a whole. Based on the comments received prior to the October 15 deadline, and the comments stated during the October 25 meeting, an Alignment Alternatives Study – Supplemental Report was published in June 2012.
Once the final alignment you see shown on our figures was chosen, public meetings resumed in 2019. Property owners within the vicinity of the finalized alignment were mailed invites to participate in these meetings. Meetings on April 17 and November 16, 2019 were held to discuss design elements and phasing. Again, the public was invited to leave contact information to be updated via email or mailed-out notices. People were also invited to leave comments or questions they had about the design of the project or how the project will be built in phases. The design team has reviewed these comments and will be using these comments as another tool to finalize the design so it serves the needs of the public.
In-person meetings have not been possible during the Covid-19 pandemic, but we still want to hear from you. If you have any questions or comments regarding this project, or any of the other projects discussed on this site, please submit a comment on our Contact Us page. We will respond to you as soon as we can. Notices for any future public meetings will be posted to this site. Also, the documents referenced on this page, and more, can be downloaded from the Library page.
Example flyer from the April 17, 2019 open house meeting.