A safer trip to Blakely school

The city is putting the finishing touches on a series of pedestrian and traffic safety improvements near Blakely Elementary School this week.

The improvements include a new sidewalk linking between the Blakely Heights neighborhood and the school, and a drop-off area on the south side of Baker Hill Road intended to ease congestion in the school parking lot.

The city also aims to slow drivers down with new road islands solar-powered beacons that will flash during school hours.

“Blakely Elementary has been described as being hidden in the trees,” said project engineer Chris Hammer, noting that many drivers speed past the area, oblivious to the school.

The beacons and islands will prompt drivers to slow down and drive carefully in the 20 mph zone, he said.

The roadside along the project area incorporate a low impact stormwater drainage system that channels water into permeable gutters.

The project was funded through a federal transportation grant administered by the Puget Sound Regional Council.