Two major construction projects on Holly Street, one to replace a watermain on West Holly and one to repair the street surface and ADA curbing and ramps on Holly Street downtown have largely concluded, in time for the summer season of downtown events and activities.
Over the course of both projects businesses and the Commercial Street Parking Garage remained open, though travel through downtown Bellingham was impacted. All essential work is now complete, though contractors may be on-site for clean-up and other tasks including installing new trash and recycling cans.
During nearly five months of construction on the $3.4 million projects (partly funded by the voter-approved Transportation Benefit District), crews ground down Holly Street’s surface; leveled, repaved and restriped; improved stormwater drainage; and brought curbs and intersections up to current standards required by the Americans with Disabilities Act and also installed new water mains to help ensure clean and safe drinking water.
“I want to thank our downtown retailers for their patience throughout what had to be a challenging time,” said Bellingham Mayor Kelli Linville. “Now we can celebrate together the benefits this construction brings – better access for all our citizens, including those with disabilities, as well as a new-and-improved street surface that is easier on bikes and cars.”
In addition to myriad restaurant and retail options, there are many reasons to visit downtown this summer. Every Wednesday through August 2, downtown Bellingham plays host to the popular weekly “Downtown Sounds concert series.” In addition, downtown’s Art Walk runs the first Friday of the month year-round, while the Commercial Street Night Market offers food, music and artisan exhibits once-a-month through September.
“Summer is a vibrant time in Bellingham, and that’s especially true for our downtown,” said Alice Clark, executive director of Downtown Bellingham Partnership. “We are so grateful for the community’s patience during this important construction and we’re thrilled to see it completed in time for a full summer of events, shopping and dining downtown.”
The City of Bellingham’s Transportation Improvement Plan, required by State law, includes all pending street projects as designated by the City’s Comprehensive Plan (section on Transportation) and is intended to ensure City streets are safe, maintained and accessible.