Newport Way - Maple to Sunset
Issaquah is designing improvements to Newport Way NW from NW Maple Street to W Sunset Way to enhance multi-modal travel, traffic operations and safety for all users.
Newport Way NW is one of the City’s busiest streets and is a key connection into Central Issaquah. Improvements on this corridor will make it easier for residents to get to schools, Issaquah Transit Center, public parks, community services, retail/commercial areas and regional connections - such as the Green Necklace and Mountains to Sound Greenway Trail.
The final Concept Cross Section strikes a balance to meet the needs of all users in the corridor. It includes –
- Continuous sidewalks on both sides of the street
- Continuous separated bike lanes on both sides of the street
- A second southbound vehicle travel lane from NW Maple Street to south of NW Holly Street
- Three roundabouts at NW Juniper Street, NW Holly Street, and NW Dogwood Street
- Illumination upgrades, bringing the corridor to lighting standards
- Landscaping elements to enhance the corridor
The final design reflects changes based on residents’ concerns with previous designs and has eliminated the center median from the design. The elimination of the center median and other modifications also addressed other concerns with previous designs by:
- Providing full access to most properties
- Reducing property impacts with a narrower cross section
- Improving emergency vehicle access
- Facilitating easier maintenance and operations
- Reducing project cost by nearly $6 million (from previous cost estimate)
The City of Issaquah has recognized the need for improvements on the one-mile-long Newport Way from NW Maple Street to W Sunset Way since City staff began analyzing the corridor in 2009.
Currently, Newport Way is one lane in each direction with narrow shoulders and sidewalk. This Newport Way corridor project is intended to be a multi-modal improvement project providing improvements for vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists and transit access. These improvements are vital to the community as it will increase safety and improve non-motorized connectivity by providing safe walking and biking facilities to many local destinations, such as schools, public parks, retail/commercial centers, and regional connectivity to Mountains to Sound Greenway and the Green Necklace.
Since 2009, new policies have been developed and the solutions to meet the needs of all users have evolved, resulting in the evaluation of several different corridor concepts.
In 2009-2011, the City began evaluating concepts for this corridor. At a Nov. 2009 public open house, the City presented two options for public comment: the first option included signalized intersections throughout the corridor, and the second option included roundabouts. Feedback from the open houses supported roundabouts over a signalized option. However, additional public input and City Council members were concerned about a proposed center median, which would restrict local access. After a second public open house in Feb. 2010, and additional traffic analysis, the City Council approved a corridor concept in Jan. 2011. This concept included:
- Roundabouts for Juniper Street, NW Holly Street and NW Dogwood Street intersections
- No center medians in the corridor
- Second southbound lane from NW Maple Street to south of the roundabout at NW Holly Street
- Continuous pedestrian facilities – sidewalk on one side and shared use path on other side
- Continuous bicycle facilities – on-street bike lanes on both sides and a shared use path on one side
The City approved the Central Issaquah Plan in 2012, which designated Newport Way as a Parkway within the Central Issaquah boundary. The Parkway street standards did not include a shared use path and reintroduced a center median for the corridor north of NW Holly Street within the Central Issaquah boundary.
In 2018, following the award of a federal grant for the design of this corridor, City staff was tasked with developing a concept design that reflected the desired elements of both the 2011 concept and the Central Issaquah Parkway standards adopted in 2012. A new concept was developed attempting to meet the criteria in both the 2011 Council Approved Concept and the 2012 Central Issaquah Parkway standard.
The 2018 refreshed concept kept the shared-use path, second southbound lane, and roundabouts that were identified in the 2011 Concept, and added the center median identified in the Parkway standard. In addition, the 2018 Concept enhanced the on-street bike lane to meet multi-modal best practices at the time – an on-street buffered bike lane. Two public open houses were held May 2019. Feedback received was continued support for roundabouts, and pedestrian and bicycle improvements – but disapproval of the center median which would result in restricting several residents’ driveway access to right-in and right-out only.
The City was awarded approximately $3 million in federal funds for the design of this project. However, the right of way acquisition and construction for this project is currently unfunded. In addition to the traffic impact fees that can be utilized for project funding, the City has been diligent about identifying potential grants including:
- Federal funds from the Puget Sound Regional Council (PSRC)
- State funds for non-motorized improvements
- Safe Route to Schools funding, and
- Transportation Improvement Board (TIB) grants
Building this project will take a thoughtful approach to minimize costs and still meet the project goals.
- May 2022: Online Community Survey
- May 2022: Community Check-In
- Winter 2022: City kicks off engineering design of new concept
- TBD: Construction (pending funding)
Due to the nature of this project, it is expected that the corridor will be constructed in phases as funding is secured. The complete funding package is expected to be a combination of city funds and state and federal grant funds.
To stay connected on this project, subscribe to the Newport neighborhood category in the City’s Notify Me tool.