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Crosswalk installed near yacht club
Boaters will have an easier time loading and unloading their carts from vehicles in a parking lot across the Port Orchard Yacht Club after the state installed a crosswalk on the west side of the city.
Captain Sherry Barnhart, vice commodore at the Port Orchard Yacht Club, said she started inquiring about a crosswalk in front of the club in June with the Washington State Department of Transportation.
“It took a long time coming,” Barnhart said. “They (WSDOT) told the mayor 10 years ago ‘no’ to a crosswalk here. Mayor Tim Matthes was also told ‘no’ this year.”
Barnhart said she discussed the need for the crosswalk and flags with Matthes. She gathered more than 200 signatures for a petition from the yacht club and area residents to present to WSDOT.
Barnhart also researched information on crosswalks.
“They’re to protect lives and gives us a secure crossing,” Barnhart said.
During the summer, she and Matthes went to Olympia for Barnhart to give WSDOT officials a one-hour presentation requesting a crosswalk or overpass in front of the yacht club.
WSDOT Region Traffic Engineer Steve Kim approved Barnhart’s request.
She said before putting up the crosswalk, WSDOT placed a vehicle counting machine for several weeks.
“There are between 14,000 and 18,000 cars that go past the yacht club each day, along with about 1,000 boaters in a radius of three blocks,” Barnhart said.
She plans to put reflective tape on the flags and carts in the near future.
WSDOT installed to crosswalk signs with flags in late October and also placed speed limit signs further away from the crosswalk.
“I asked them to move the speed-limit signs to be seen before vehicles approach the crosswalk,” Barnhart said. “Now we have a safe visible crossing.”
There also are plans to remove some of the concrete parking guards to make for easier mobility for people when using their cart and crossing the crosswalk.
“That will be up to the yacht club’s board of trustees to removed the parking guards,” she added.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was Nov. 4 with Barnhart, Matthes and Fathoms o’ Fun Princess Joanna Aquino.