Neighbors opposed to extending Ellensburg road

Neighbors opposed to extending Ellensburg road »Play Video
ELLENSBURG, Wash. -- Plans to extend a street in Ellensburg are not sitting well with some neighbors. It's been in the city's plans for years. Now that the project has funding, neighbors are trying to stop it.

"That's what I'm talking about," said Stan Blazynski about loud traffic.

Stan isn't happy about Ellensburg's plan to extend 3rd Avenue to Pfenning Road. Not only does he think it will be noisy, but he worries that an increase in traffic through the residential neighborhood will be a safety hazard.

"That's like opening a gate to a floodwater," said Stan.

He's started a petition to stop it. So far, he has collected about 70 signatures, but it doesn't seem that's enough to keep the Ellensburg City Council from moving forward with the extension.

"Unless folks can really convince me otherwise, I think it needs to go through," said Council Member Nancy Lillquist.

Work would start at the corner of Valley View Elementary School. Plans also call for adding a sidewalk, as well as a path for pedestrians and bicycles.

Lillquist says a longer 3rd Avenue would help people get to the school and through town more easily.

"If it's not in one neighborhood, then it's in another," said Lillquist. "The traffic needs to get from point A to point B."

The project is expected to cost about $1.3 million, with more than $800,000 coming from the state. It's been part of Ellensburg's long-term comprehensive plan for years.

It's now reached the point that the city is close to doing something in Stan's neighborhood.

"I will not settle for anything less than to abandon the project," said Stan.

Stan says he's willing to go to court to try.

A design plan will be brought to Ellensburg City Council next month. There still need to be traffic and environmental impact studies. The earliest construction could begin in June of next year.