Howarth Park Beach Bridge Closure Extended

July 21, 2016

Everett, Everett Government

First it was to re-open Memorial Day, then in May the City of Everett announced the Howarth Park Bridge closure would be done at the end of July. That’s now been pushed back again. Here’s the latest in a press release issued from the city today…

Howarth park bridge

The bridge is the only safe and legal way across the tracks to Howarth Park Beach.

Everett Parks and Recreation staff announced today that on-site work for the Howarth Park pedestrian bridge repair project will begin Monday, July 25. The bridge will remain closed until all repairs are complete.

“This is not the news we’d hoped to share with the community, but unfortunately, we will not be able to reopen the bridge this month,” said Lori Cummings, parks and recreation director. “Working above active railroad tracks is very involved, and the required agreements and meetings between BNSF and Forma Construction were just completed.”

Forma Construction crews will first complete repairs to the section of the bridge that is not over the tracks, and expect to start over-track work in early August. The contractor anticipates that work will take approximately four weeks, barring unforeseen delays, and hopes to wrap up by early September.

Forma Construction submitted, and BNSF approved, a revised track protection plan in May, which outlines how they’ll protect workers above the tracks, and prevent debris from falling onto the tracks or trains. Over-track repairs also require BNSF flaggers to stop work when trains are approaching. A construction meeting was held on July 19 to coordinate the final construction details, identify tasks to be completed this week and finalize the proposed schedule with BNSF.

The bridge and beach access have been closed since May 2015, when a routine inspection uncovered significant rust causing extensive deterioration on the bridge’s steel beams that support the walking surface. The City immediately closed the bridge and contracted the design of repairs. BNSF approved the design in December 2015 and the repair project was awarded to Forma Construction in February 2016.

BNSF and City staff reminds residents and visitors that it is illegal and dangerous to cross railroad tracks outside of designated crossings.

Nearshore Restoration Project Update:
Snohomish County’s Nearshore Restoration Project began in June, taking advantage of the extended closure of the bridge. The County’s work at Howarth Park beach is expected to wrap up by July 31.

The County’s beach restoration project included removing the bulkhead on the beach, restoring and re-grading the beach, and planting native vegetation. For more information, visitwww.snocomrc.org/Projects/Restoration/Nearshore-Sediment-Study.aspx.

While Howarth Park beach remains closed, community members can enjoy the beach at other nearby locations:

The closure includes the beach off-leash area. Alternate off-leash areas nearby include:

  • Loganberry Lane Park (9201 18th Avenue West)
  • Japanese Gulch (1301 West Mukilteo Blvd)
  • Lowell Park (4605 South 3rd Avenue)

For more information on the bridge repair project, visit www.everettwa.gov/howarthbridge.


About myeverettnews

My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring breaking news and events in Everett, WA. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett. It's written by Leland Dart a former Snohomish County based radio reporter born and raised in Everett.

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3 Responses to “Howarth Park Beach Bridge Closure Extended”

  1. Mike N Says:

    My son and I were driving past Howarth Park today and told him about this story. He asked, “Why can’t they just drop in a temporary bridge?”
    I did not have a good answer for that.

  2. Bourne Says:

    No surprise. They knew it would take a protracted amount of time to negotiate with BNSF and yet they put out an aggressive timeline. What’s over/under on whether this will exceed budget?

  3. Kylie Says:

    Is this really any surprise to anyone? When I read here that the updated time frame was the end of July, I thought “Yeah right. They’ve been saying that for a year now.” And look… They haven’t even started yet! It’s should take 4 weeks barring any unforseen complications.. Meaning that it should take another year.