The city of East Wenatchee is spending $2.5 million to finish out sidewalks on 5th Street through a heavy pedestrian area. 

The project will bring continuous sidewalks between the western edge of 5th Street at Baker Ave. and Kentucky Ave to the east. 

East Wenatchee Public Works Manager Gerron Melton says it’ll complete sidewalk work that began 10 years ago. 

“This project is going to complete those sidewalks to make sure there’s contiguous walking space for students (and) community,” said Melton. “It’s also a major Link bus route area.” 

Sidewalks were first constructed on 5th Street's west end between Baker Ave. and Eastmont Ave. in 2015. 

The new project will fill in sidewalk gaps left by the Safe Routes to School project, which is now in progress  

The federally funded Safe Routes program is bringing about $6.8 million to create safe walking paths for kids between schools and residential areas.  

It calls for the construction of sidewalks, installation of streetlights, improvements to pedestrian crossings, and traffic calming features on 5th Street NE. 

There are three school that sit just off  5th Street - the back side of Eastmont High School, Sterling Junior High School and Kenroy Elementary School.

Melton says the new project will also ease traffic flow with a new signal light. 

"So, it's really going to help with connectivity," Melton said. "And we also got a stop light at 5th and Eastmont. So that four-way stop that backs up is eventually going to become a thing of the past." 

The East Wenatchee City Council approved the project Tuesday, which is scheduled for construction in 2025. 

It's being funded by a state Transportation Improvement Board Fuel Tax Agreement, which is awarding more than 83% of its costs up to $2.5 million. 

The Urban Arterial Program funds projects to assist with priorities including safety, commercial growth and development, mobility, or physical condition. 

The new project is directed at 5th Street NE safety and multimodal improvements between Baker Ave to Kentucky Ave. 

The city's cost in the project is $413,310. 

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