COLLEGE PLACE, Washington – Construction has begun on Whitman Drive West from the College Place city limits to Last Chance Road. The project will provide a separated 12-foot wide concrete share-use path and buffered bicycle lanes for just a bit more than two miles in length.
At a cost of $1.95 million, the Walla Walla County Public Works Department is using funds from the county and state pedestrian and bicycle program. Construction began April 29 and is expected to be completed July 23.
“You know, we had a bicycle fatality out there on Whitman Drive,” College Place Mayor Harvey Crowder said. “The county actually received state funding to widen Whitman Drive so that it’s got a little wider access. There’s a dedicated area for walkers and bikers to help keep that safer out there. It’s heavily used, and we think it’s a great project.”
In 2015, Walla Walla University student Madison Baird died while riding her bike. A driver was blinded by the sun and did not see her riding along the road.
During construction, Whitman Drive West is open to local traffic only.