SOUTHWORTH — A culvert replacement project in South Kitsap will help fish pass through an unnamed stream that runs under Olympiad Drive more easily.
Right now two small concrete culverts exist under the road but tend to get plugged up, said Tim Beachy, project manager at Kitsap County Public Works. The new culvert will be an 18-foot-wide box culvert so the stream may flow uninhibited.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WFDW) and the Suquamish Tribe were consulted about what would be appropriate for this location, Beachy said.
The project qualifies as a “Fish Habitat Enhancement Project” meaning what’s being done is a positive thing for fish habitat. It also helps with permitting, Beachy said.
The project will last about 40 working days, typically Monday through Friday. Since the project will affect fish, there’s a window set by WDFW and the Army Corps of Engineers to do the work that touches the water between July 30 and Sept. 15. A resolution has been approved to close the road, but that won’t happen until close to the actual start date. The closure will be posted at the site and published.
The funding will come from Public Works road funds. It will cost $406,406.
“This isn’t a large project but it will impact the local community,” Beachy said. Often there are numerous pedestrians seen on the road, sometimes more than cars, he said.
“It’s a beautiful little area. A small unnamed stream falls directly into our saltwater so it’s good to give the fish access.”
Beachy said in addition to Kitsap County being a major funder, there are often utility companies that are involved too —such as Puget Sound Energy power lines. He said the county appreciates the willingness of the companies to work with them.