The Johnson Parkway-Highway 305 roundabout project is coming along as Poulsbo hears an update from the city’s Engineering Department.
“The teams been working very well and very hard to keep this project moving and also to work in this new arrangement with WSDOT doesn’t usually do with smaller projects, and it’s working out really well,” said Diane Lenius, director of city Engineering.
Construction began in January and is expected to be completed in late January or early February of 2022. The project encompasses not only the roundabout but also a shared-use path and pedestrian tunnel, and mitigation efforts to address infrastructure, stormwater, and impacts on local waterways.
The project also includes art at the roundabout that reflects Poulsbo and its neighbors in Suquamish.
“To date what we have done so far is installed the culverts for two streams. We just started the culvert installation for Bjorgen Creek and anticipate to be setting footings next week,” said Josh Ranes, city civil engineer. “You may have seen already we got rid of the bypass road that came through the roundabout site and have paved the road through Lemolo and have got traffic back on the road to the main alignment of the roundabout.”
There’s also been installation of curbs, sidewalks and paving on the south side of the roundabout. The pedestrian tunnel is about 70 percent complete. Finally, about 1,400 feet of the joint utility trench has been installed.
“The joint utility trench is an effort to combine multiple utilities into one trench in planning for future use,” Ranes said.
The trench will allow for groups like Puget Sound Energy, Comcast, Centurylink, Kitsap Public Utility District, city of Poulsbo and Cascade Natural Gas to have access to key lines as more development happens.
The project was budgeted at $18.8 million, with a contract bid for $15.3 million. Of that, $6.4 million has been paid, and there have been $37,520 in change orders thus far, though Ranes expects there will be more.
“This is a very large project and with that expect some surprises along the way. We have already received some surprises but where we are in the project to be at this level of change orders is really great. We have a few change orders that are going to be a bit larger than we are working on now that we’re working through negotiations with the contractor currently,” Ranes said.
Ranes and the Engineering Department had the opportunity to visit with artist/blacksmith Elijah Burnett, who is working on the art centerpiece for the roundabout. Burnett’s design of a forged metal sculpture that ties together the environmental, Nordic and Native heritage of Poulsbo was a topic of great discussion back in January.
“We got to go out and take a look at his shop and see his progress and actually watch him in action and see how he’s starting to mold some of these pieces… it was a really fun thing to go out and see,” Ranes said.