The city of Marysville is accepting public comment for their plan to improve public right-of-way for people with disabilities.

Individuals can review the draft plan at marysvillewa.gov/1032 and submit comments until Nov. 24.

The plan is a requirement of the American with Disabilities Act.

"It's a federal requirement for cities with over 50 staff members," said Marysville City Engineer Jeff Laycock. "And it's more of a requirement for organizations that are the recipients of federal funds."

Work on the ADA transition plan began last year and was formed after consideration of public comment, workshops and surveys. 

"We've identified certain areas that the public has had concerns with," said Laycock.

The majority of the plan is looking at areas where pedestrian access is insufficient for those with disabilities.

"We have an inventory of all the sidewalk ramps in the city," said Laycock. They have looked at all the curb ramps that do not meet ADA standards with requirements such as spacing and sloping.

City staff also looked at areas that don't have sidewalks.

"It's really about making an inventory about what's out there," said Laycock.

Intersection access was also one of the considerations.

"There's also some looking at push buttons at signals because they have to meet a certain standard for the ADA as well," said Laycock.

The city of Marysville's Human Resources Director was also re-affirmed as the ADA coordinator, who receives and handles ADA grievances, a responsibility they already had.

"We're also identifying the funding mechanisms to get some of these problems fixed," he said. "We want to develop a plan to help overcome those barriers."

Although the plan is a federal requirement, the city is not obligated to commit to a hard deadline to complete the plan, said Laycock.

"The city will continue to fund those improvements through capital development," he said.

In recent years a lot has been done through the city's Transportation Benefit District, which uses the majority of its funds to maintain roads through asphalt overlays.

When maintenance is done, typically sidewalks are upgraded if necessary as well, said Laycock.

"Each time you're overlaying a street you also update the ramps for compliance," he said.

The older areas of the city have the most access problems for residents with disabilities, often because they were built before ADA restrictions were in place.

"I'd say there's a higher concentration in our historic downtown area," said Laycock. "Anything that is built now is built up to standard."

After public comment on the draft plan, city staff plan to recommend it to the Marysville City Council, who will likely consider to approve or reject by the end of the year, said Laycock.

 

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