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Port Angeles begins process for westward trail extension

Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES, WA-- Now that Waterfront Trail users can get out of the city heading east, the process has begun to establish a westward route to the Elwha River.

The proposed Olympic Discovery Trail path, which is currently a city-designated bicycle route, would follow Hill Street up the bluff, turn south onto Fourth Street, continue to the Milwaukee Drive right of way, then follow it across 18th Street and Dry Creek and out to the Elwha River.

The proposed route includes a hanging deck underneath the new Elwha River Bridge to separate pedestrians and vehicles while keeping the bridge as narrow as possible to maintain scenic views.

Clallam County is holding a public meeting on replacing the one-lane Elwha River Bridge at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Meeting Room 160 at the Clallam County Courthouse, 223 E. Fourth St., Port Angeles.

Right of way to be used

Peninsula Trails Coalition President Chuck Preble said there's plenty of room because the proposed route includes 100 feet of city-owned right of way used for water and power lines.

``The westward trail extension is in the city's comprehensive plan,'' Preble said.

``It was put in last year. We've progressed to the point of asking the state for funding for engineering the route.''

The key to the westward extension is the replacement for the Elwha River Bridge, which has been pushed back to 2007 in the county's plans, Preble said.

``I'm thinking it's probably 2008. By 2008, it could be out to Lake Crescent. I'm so excited about this whole thing,'' he said.


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