OLYMPIA - With a continuing series of earth-rattling booms, construction crews are driving 30-ton concrete piles - 28 in all - into the ground at Percival Landing.
The work, part of a $10.5 million project to revamp the city’s waterfront park, will continue for about three weeks, said Kip Summers, the project engineer for the city. It will be the most intensive work contractor Quigg Bros. of Aberdeen will do. Work afterward will be less noisy, Summers said.
The old wooden boardwalk that dates to the 1970s has been demolished between State and Thurston avenues. Crews will replace it with a waterfront path that incorporates wooden planks. The path is designed to require less maintenance.
The new park is expected to open in early August before the annual Harbor Days celebration, Summers said. The work is on schedule, he added but the contractor has run into complications.
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Crews discovered a couple of plumes of unexpected ground contamination, requiring the city to dispose of the earth rather than reuse it on the site.
“That required us to do some more investigation of the site, of the entire Percival Landing site that we’re working on this year,” Summers said.
That has meant slightly more than $1 million in additional cost so far, Summers said. The amount will be covered by the project’s contingency fund. He said crews are removing contaminated soils along the shoreline, and the city is working with the state Department of Ecology on a plan to handle contamination on land away from the shore.
The redone park from State to Thurston avenues is only the first phase of boardwalk work, and the only one that is funded. Newer sections of the boardwalk are still accessible north of Thurston Avenue to the Port Plaza.
Summers said concrete piles were chosen because they’ll last longer. They’re going next to a shoreline that will be restored and replanted with native plants.
Other features include new landscaping, a marine-themed restroom and two interpretive pavilions. A new, 11-space parking area will be built along Columbia Avenue to replace the parking that will be removed behind Les Schwab.
Most of Olympia Avenue will be transformed into a pedestrian walkway with an entrance sign. That area will include new curbs, crosswalks and stamped concrete finish similar to that found on Fifth Avenue. Also, the nearby Olympia Center’s parking lot will be revamped with new landscaping, irrigation and lighting to match the new Percival Landing.
Matt Batcheldor: 360-704-6869 firstname.lastname@example.org