Grow traffic calming to reduce growing problem

There’s been a growing traffic problem on Grow Avenue on Bainbridge Island.

So much so that a neighborhood group submitted a Slow-on-Grow proposal to the city.

As a result, the City Council is expected at its meeting Feb. 27 to authorize city manager Blair King to proceed with a traffic calming plan on Grow.

City documents say the traffic calming will address day-to-day traffic speeds on Grow and will also serve to mitigate traffic speeds associated with any “spillover” traffic in relation with the upcoming Madison Avenue reconstruction project.

A version of the proposed plan was reviewed and recommended to move forward by the city’s Traffic Operations Committee. Additionally, the BI fire department and BI school district transportation officials were consulted to ensure that emergency equipment and school buses can navigate the proposed improvements.

Appraisal report

The council also will receive the Murray Brackett Report. It has to do with the purchase of the former medical commercial building at 8804 Madison that is now the Ted Spearman Justice Center.

Complaints were brought up by the public regarding the appraisal of that site. The purchase price was $8.975 million.

S. Murray Brackett reviewed the four appraisals: $9.7 million, $7.52 million, $7.6 million and $7.04 million.


The council will receive a report on downtown parking and direct King to review parking programs.

The intention of the review is to provide equal access to downtown parking for all residents and visitors. The parking section of BI code is outdated and should be updated for clarity and to reduce duplication with topics covered in state law, city documents say.

An earlier review shows warnings do not work for most parking violations. The council voted to increase monetary citations. Exceptions have been allowed in some neighborhoods that were not OK’d by council.

A Downtown Employee Parking Permit and weekend boat-trailer parking along Brien and Bjune drives are being evaluated.

Winslow, Comp plans

The council will receive reports on the Winslow Subarea and Comprehensive plans. The plans serve as policy documents that guide city services and decisions regarding land use, housing, transportation and more. They serve to unify and further the work of other recently adopted policy including the Climate Action and Sustainable Transportation plans, city documents say.

Alternatives for both plans are being analyzed in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement to ensure the public and decision-makers have technical information related to impacts and tradeoffs of potential actions.

For the Winslow plan: Two documents have been uploaded to the project website. Detailed information on the Draft Alternatives for the Winslow Subarea Plan is contained in a new Draft Summary of Alternatives Chapter, and the fall community engagement is described in an amended Outreach and Engagement Summary Chapter.

For the Comprehensive Plan: Summary reports have been uploaded to the project website. Those reports provide the full scope of review that the Comp Plan update will consider.

Next steps include work on a draft EIS that combines review of Winslow alternatives with the island-wide alternatives. The city expects the draft EIS to be complete in late spring. Staff is working with consultants and the Steering Committee to map out ideas, concepts and plans for public engagement.


This work is usually done without discussion.

In it, $439,629 more will go to the Winslow Water Tank Replacement Project; King will be authorized to award a contract to Northwest Cascade for the Ferncliff Avenue Water Main Extension Project for a little over $1.149 million; and King will be authorized to sign the Wintergreen Multifamily Tax Exemption Contract.


Justice Center

The council will authorize to increase from 22% to 42% King’s change order authority for construction of the Ted Spearman Justice Center and to authorize a related budget amendment to move $980,000 from the operating budget to capital projects.

A modification to the King’s change order authority and a budget amendment to move funds within the budget are required to complete the final payments to Clark Construction.

The 2023-28 Capital Improvement Plan includes $21.52 million for the Justice Center, and the operating project budget includes $536,384 that is carried over from 2023 into 2024. The budget amendment would move the $536,384 into the capital project to cover the costs of furniture, computer hardware and software needs, and elevator maintenance – which were deemed 2023 capital expenses by the city’s Finance Department.

In addition, the budget amendment would move $443,616 from the 2024 operating budget to capital projects to cover the remaining project costs, documents say.

Madison Avenue

The Bundled Madison Avenue Non-Motorized & Sewer Improvements Project will replace the existing roadway surface and sewer force main (High School Road to New Brooklyn Avenue), install dedicated/revised existing bike lanes, pedestrian ramps, driveways, and landscaped buffers; relocate catch basin and storm-water laterals; infill sidewalk; implement traffic calming; and other related work between Winslow Way and Highway 305.

City staff recommends the council award the project to the apparent low bidder, Sound Pacific Construction LLC, in the amount of just over $4.269 million. The engineer’s estimate is $5.3 million.