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Culvert replacement plan awaiting bidders

Clear Creek runs through the culvert below Silverdale Way. A bridge is planned to replace this structure and provide wider creek access. - Photo by Valentina Petrova
Clear Creek runs through the culvert below Silverdale Way. A bridge is planned to replace this structure and provide wider creek access.
— image credit: Photo by Valentina Petrova

Just south of the Silverdale Rotary Gateway Park and north of the Waaga Way off ramp, Clear Creek flows underneath Silverdale Way. Soon the waters of the creek should run freer underneath the road — good for flood control and even better for migrating salmon.

For six years now the county’s Department of Public Works has had a project in the pipes to replace the culvert, which channels the creek below the tires of motorists on Silverdale Way, with a bridge.

If everything goes as planned and the project is awarded to a contractor in the first days of November, construction on the bridge is anticipated to begin in May 2006.

“In the past during storm events in (the late 1990s) the existing crossing didn’t have adequate capacity for larger flooding events,” said Public Works spokesman Doug Bear.

In 1999 the county brought in a consultant and one of the alternatives suggested for better flood control was the construction of a bridge, in addition to other projects in the area such as a high-flow channel down the stream from the creek crossing.

“Last time the water overflowed,” said Jon Brand, assistant Public Works director, “it required us to completely close Silverdale Way.”

The bridge, which will be more than 50 feet wide is designed to “convey more water in a more natural condition,” Brand explained. Compared to the existing culvert, which is a pipe less than 10 feet wide, a bridge should provide a more flexible creek flow, especially when the water level rises.

The planning stages of the bridge did not flow quite as smoothly as anticipated though and the design, permits and right of ways were

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