To stripe or not to stripe some county roads

The in basket: Dorothy Cokelet of Sunnyhill Road in the West Hills area just outside the Bremerton city limits wonders why the county didn’t restore the yellow centerline on her road after paving it this summer. 

There’s a lot of traffic on the road, she said. 

The out basket: And so the county discovered after another resident protested the same thing, says Traffic Engineer Jeff Shea.

Sunnyhill will get its stripe back, but not right away.

The county had decided to no longer put a center stripe on Sunnyhill as it standardized which roads get a center stripe and which don’t, he said.

“We now evaluate all roads when overlayed or chip–sealed for striping requirements,” he said. “The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices only mandates striping on paved urban arterials and collectors with daily traffic greater than 6,000 vehicles per day.

Sunnyhill, with about 600 vehicles a day, was among 15 roads chosen to be added to the list of those without a center stripe, he said. 

“At the request of a resident living along the road, we conducted an investigation of the street,” Jeff said. We found many non-residents use it as a cut-through to get between Harlow and Werner.  The officially classified collector which runs parallel to Sunnyhill (Broad, O and Ida roads) does not really work as a collector due to the narrowness of the road and the turns involved in getting from Harlow to Werner.” Also, they noted that the truck volumes on Sunnyhill were much higher than most roads, 10-15 percent.

 “For these reasons we made the decision to restripe the road,” he said. “The problem we’ve encountered since making this decision is the weather. 

“We cannot stripe with our environmentally friendly water-based paint if there is even a hint of rain,” Jeff said. “It will not dry. The air and surface temperature must be above 50 degrees or warmer also.  We are hoping we get a chance to stripe it this year, though the window of opportunity may be very limited.”


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