Orange metal plates spanning a lane on Broadway in Everett are covering voids like this one, discovered during the Wetmore Avenue emergency bypass project. All that remained of the original wooden pipe were the metal rings that surrounded it. (City of Everett)

Orange metal plates spanning a lane on Broadway in Everett are covering voids like this one, discovered during the Wetmore Avenue emergency bypass project. All that remained of the original wooden pipe were the metal rings that surrounded it. (City of Everett)

Why those annoying steel plates are on Broadway in Everett

They cover voids left by a disintegrated wooden pipe. It could be weeks before they’re filled.

A pair of large, construction-orange steel plates have interrupted the flow of traffic in the right lane of northbound Broadway in Everett between 36th and 35th streets for weeks now.

Drivers swerve around them at the last minute, sometimes not even bothering to slow down, sometimes straying off the roadway to do it. The plates make for some uncomfortable bumps in the road, for sure, and some of us have altered our commute simply to avoid them.

What are they for, and when will they finally go away?

Everett Public Works spokeswoman Kathleen Baxter provided the answer: “The orange steel plates are covering a void left by a disintegrated wood stave pipe, part of the old original water transmission line 1. The water maintenance division is working to get a contractor out to fill the void with concrete slurry. It is estimated that it will take 36 yards of concrete to fill this void.”

That’s a lot of concrete.

Up to five concrete trucks’ worth, to be exact.

The one-day job has yet to be set. The city is still identifying who will do the work. But the repair job will likely be completed before the week of Thanksgiving, Baxter said.

“The preferred repair method is somewhat specialized because it requires the void to be filled in such a way that the concrete doesn’t go into other pipes or areas where it is not intended to go,” she said.

Crews found a similar void during the Wetmore Avenue emergency bypass project. That pipe also had been part of the original 24-inch water transmission line 1. The wooden pipe itself was long gone. All that remained were the metal coupling rings that used to surround the pipe.

“Sometimes roads have been constructed over the top of abandoned pipes. When those pipes were made of wood, they eventually disintegrate. In some cases, they were filled before constructing over them. In some cases, such as this, they were not,” Baxter said. “There are many things to find underneath the roadways …”

Talk to us

More in Local News

A masked passenger sits in front of an empty row of seats on an Alaska Airlines flight from Spokane to Sea-Tac Monday evening. (Julie Muhlstein) 20201026
Flying to see family, it was a risk that seemed like a must

After eight months of not seeing my 98-year-old mom, a trip to my Spokane hometown was short and sweet.

Three people were shot at the Boo Han Oriental Market Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, off of Highway 99 in Edmonds. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Charges: Boo Han shooter stalked wife, sent alarming texts

Duy Nguyen is charged with killing his wife’s friend and wounding two others at an Edmonds market.

As seen in body-camera video, an Everett police sergeant places handcuffs on Joseph Michael Hill, 39, while kneeling on his back. Everett's chief says it was reasonable use of force. Hill's attorney disagrees. (Everett Police Department) 20200524
Plea deal reached in case of Black man pinned by Everett cop

Joseph Hill’s arrest led Everett police to amend their policy. All charges except resisting arrest were dropped.

Firefighters were dispatched to a burning home Wednesday night in Monroe. (Snohomish Regional Fire & Rescue)
Fire crews fight blaze at Monroe-area house throughout night

No injuries were reported. Access to water was a challenge as firefighters fought the flames.

Lilah 2 TEASER
Langley man builds automatic candy dispenser for Halloween

People are still finding ways to partake in the holiday’s celebrations in a safe manner.

Monroe Police Department
Police search for Monroe bank robbery suspect, hope for tips

A search with a police dog and drone could not track down the suspect Monday afternoon.

Darrington man sentenced in death of 2 horses he starved

He submitted an Alford plea, not admitting guilt but acknowledging a jury would likely convict him.

Bail set at $1 million in homicide outside Tulalip casino

The Spanaway man is accused of assaulting his girlfriend, who had a medical condition.

Jana Smith places her sister Jody Loomis' boot back into an evidence bag while testify on Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2020 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Trial in Mill Creek murder tests memories of 48 years ago

Jody Loomis’ sister testified this week in the trial of a man accused of killing the 20-year-old in 1972.

Most Read