EVERETT — The replacement of a deficient and obsolete bridge that is a vital link connecting Mukilteo and Everett is delayed again, this time until June 2024.
The project, led by the city of Everett, will replace Edgewater Bridge on West Mukilteo Boulevard between Shore Avenue in Everett and Mukilteo Lane in Mukilteo. Construction is expected to take a year, during which time the road will be closed on both sides to cars, bikes and pedestrians, severing daily routes to schools and workplaces at Mukilteo city limits.
An error in the bidding process is the reason for the latest snag in the project, previously delayed by the pandemic and an environmental review that took longer than expected.
The original estimate of $22 million is now about $27 million. The plan is to advertise for bids in November with the bid opening in December and an award in January.
The 400-foot bridge was built in 1946.
“It has outlived its useful life cycle,” said Dan Enrico, an Everett Public Works engineer and the Edgewater Bridge project manager.
About 6,000 vehicles daily cross the bridge, which is not built to current seismic safety standards. There is no other way to cross Edgewater Creek or the surrounding ravine.
“It is classified as structurally deficient and functionally obsolete,” city engineer Tom Hood said.
But, Hood said, “the bridge is safe.”
This is one of several Mukilteo Boulevard bridge projects addressing the concern of neighborhoods at risk of getting isolated on “population islands” after a major earthquake.
Building a road along the coastline winding from Everett to Mukilteo was difficult from the start due to the many hills, valleys and steep gullies, according to HistoryLink. The road, opened in 1914, allowed residential development, which currently has a sought-after mix of old and new homes.
During construction, travelers will be mostly detoured along Glenwood Avenue, Merrill Creek Parkway, Boeing Expressway and Highway 525. Everett Transit’s run between Everett Station and the Mukilteo waterfront via West Mukilteo Boulevard will be shifted. Mukilteo School District buses in the area will have a new route as well.
Common driving trips will take 5 to 15 minutes longer during the closure, based on origin and destination, according to the city.
The replacement bridge will be larger, with lighting and railings.
“The new width is 50 feet out-to-out, they call it, with 6-foot-6-inch sidewalks, 5-foot bike lanes and luxurious 12-foot wide travel lanes,” Enrico said.
Hood said the likely chance of getting another $10 million in federal bridge funding for the project is “one of the potential silver linings” in the delay.
The construction will coincide somewhat with a separate Everett project, the renovation of nearby Edgewater Park, a small but popular park with dated play equipment and sports courts. The park on Shore Avenue will be closed during much of the bridge replacement.
The delay is good and bad, said Lia Tetreault, owner of Soundview Deli & Grocery, less than a block from the bridge on the Everett side. She bought the aging grocery earlier this year, remodeled the inside and painted the dull exterior a bright yellow. It is the only market serving the area on both sides of the bridge.
“It’s bad for the other side not coming,” Tetreault said. “People on this side will come in.”