Port Angeles, WA News from Peninsula News Network, 6/28/07

Police use robot to explode small device at PA business

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Clallam County Sheriff’s deputies are still trying to figure out who was responsible for a small explosive device they had to detonate with a robot outside a Port Angeles business.

Officers were called to the Les Schwab store on Highway 101 east late Wednesday night after a loud explosion was heard from the parking lot behind the business.

Deputies found debris at the scene, including a black cylinder which appeared to be part of a home-made explosive. It was about 8-inches long and 2-inches thick, wrapped in black electrical tape. To be safe, the State Patrol bomb squad was called to the scene and used a small robot to explode the device. There was no damage to the business and no one was injured.

Officers say possession of such a device is a Class “C” felony.

Gateway construction restarts

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Convinced bone fragments discovered this week were from an animal, contractors are resuming construction on the multi-million dollar Gateway Transportation Center.

Work on the combination bus center and parking garage halted Tuesday after the discovery of bone fragments in dirt taken from the lowest level of the excavation at the corner of Front and Lincoln in downtown Port Angeles. In keeping with new protocols established after discovery of the Tse-whit-zen graveyard and cemetary, archelogists from the Klallam Tribe and other local government agencies were immediately called to the scene.

Wednesday, the experts determined the fragments were animal, not human. City officials said Thursday the fragments were in an area of fill containing “historic/Euroamerican objects”, Other debris included everything from old patent medicene and beer bottles to railroad spikes and rusted metal. Archeologists believe the bone fragments were probably those of a domesticated animal.

The city is promising to continue “diligent archeological monitoring” even as construction resumes.

Remains at Gateway not human

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Archeologists say bones discovered at the construction site for the Gateway Transportation Center are animal, not human.

Discovery of the bones at the property at the corner of Front and Lincoln Tuesday forced construction to halt. The discovery appeared to be the city’s worst nightmare, coming just a couple of years after construction workers found the ancient Klallam Village of Tse-whit-zen, forcing the multi-million dollar state graving dock to be scrapped. These bone fragments were discovered in dirt that had been removed from the site.

But PA officials told PNN Wednesday afternoon that an analysis of the bone fragments had determined the bones weren’t human and probably belong to an animal.

However, authorities are being extra cautious before resuming construction, and spent more time Wednesday afternoon analyzing the place where the fragments were found. At last word, only a few more pieces of similar bone were found.

The discovery marked the first time the city has employed the new protocols for dealing with archeological discoveries during waterfront construction that came out of the Tse-whit-zen agreement. Those consulting on the discovery included the city, Olympic National Park, state officials and leaders of the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe.

Although it’s believed the area where Gateway is being constructed was never used as a village or cemetery for Native American peoples, the site is less than a block away from where Klallams lived at Hollywood Beach. Tuesday’s discovery happened at the lowest level of the excavation which started a few weeks ago.

City selling compost at half-price

Monday, June 25, 2007

People who would like to give their green thumb some help, while saving money at the same time, will find quite a bargain on compost this week, as the City of Port Angeles cuts the price of compost in half.

The city collects compost at the Regional Transfer Station on the west side of Port Angeles, using a mixture of yard waste that’s collected from area residents, and biosolids from the city’s wastewater treatment plant.

This week the city is hoping to cut down on the compost that’s been piling up in recent month by selling the fertilizer at 50% off the regular prices until the end of this week. Sale prices are $10 per cubic yard, up to 3 cubic yards. The price drops to $8.50 if you buy 4-yards or more. A yard is smallest quantity that can be purchased.

The city is also passing out 12-page booklets to give PA residents some tips and ideas on using compost.

Compost can be purchased Monday through Saturday from 9am until 5pm.

Gateway construction officially starts

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

After more than a decade of debate and planning, construction of the Gateway Transportation Center officially started Tuesday morning.

Officials with the City of Port Angeles and Clallam Transit joined with representatives of the Port Angeles Regional Chamber of Commerce, the PA Downtown Association and federal officials for an official groundbreaking on the site. (City of PA photo)

The ceremony comes two weeks after construction actually started on the site. Crews from Primo Construction have made rapid progress in preparing the site, excavating a huge hole at the corner of Front and Lincoln, demolishing adjoining sidewalks and removing debris.

Gateway was first conceived in the early 1990s as CTS and city officials looked for ways to consolidate bus, ferry and other transportation services along the waterfront into a single location. Although the incorporation of ferry connections was later dropped, the new center will feature a parking garage that wasn’t part of the original concept.

Construction is expected to last into next year.



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