Harper road work still planned


The in basket: Jane Myers  of Olympiad Drive in South Kitsap, one of the Harper area residents in favor of the Kitsap County’s planned alteration of Southworth Drive through Harper, asked in July whatever became of the project. I had lost track of the proposal and wondered myself if the impending departure from office of County Commissioner Jan Angel, a key proponent of the work in the face of opposition among the property owners to be affected, might be the end of it.

The out basket: Since Jane asked, there have been news stories bringing us up to date and revealing that the project is still planned, regardless of Jan Angel’s decision to run for the Legislature instead of reelection. 

The state Shorelines Hearings Board in late August rejected an appeal by the project’s opponents, which was based in part on the changed slope of the road and loss of landside ditches, which they feel will increase contaminated roadway runoff into the bay or onto the beach. 

They have asked the hearings board to reconsider, the kind of  reversal I’ve never seen happen after an initial ruling, in court or otherwise. A final decision is due this month. After that, the opponents can go to court to try to stop it, and opposition leader Rebecca McCoy says she will, if it comes to that. 

The project has been on the county’s road improvement list for a couple of years, and now is expected to show up on the 2009 project list, due in December. Continued appeals could delay it further.

The work would add four-foot shoulders for bicycles and pedestrians to the road from the Harper Dock to Olympiad and a foot in width to the travel lanes. It’s estimated to cost $910,000. 

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