Pasco capitol improvements plan approved

Pasco capitol improvements plan approved »Play Video
PASCO, Wash. -- People in Pasco will start to see some big changes hit the city in the next few years.

From street improvements to a new animal shelter,projects are getting closer to construction.

Car accidents happen outside Ben Smith's business all too often.

"The accidents kinda worry me. Because I worry about people's safety," he says.

Ben runs the gas station on Lewis Street and Oregon Avenue in east Pasco. He says safety changes to that intersection couldn't come sooner.

"The city's growing every year, so at the end, they need to do these improvements otherwise the city's gonna outgrow the current roads," he added.

Pasco agrees: Oregon Avenue is a problem.

It's why the city made it a top priority on the list of large projects they plan to undertake this year.

"It's a really bad situation. High speeds, truck traffic, a lot left turns and more and more business activity -- it's becoming virtually deadly," says City Manager Gary Crutchfield.

He says by approving a capital projects plan every year, the city can prioritize what gets attention first.

Those priorities include adding lanes to Oregon Avenue and changing signals and lanes around Road-68. Two-lanes will be added on Burden to prevent the backups that build after a game at GESA Stadium.

Pasco also plans on joining Richland and Kennewick in paying for a new animal shelter.

All said and done, the Capitol Improvements plan clears just over 150-million-dollars in projects for the next five years.

"I know it will affect my business because they will close down that road for the construction and it's not like it's gonna be done in a year--it's gonna actually take quite a long time, but overall, at the end, it will open it up, widen it. It will make the city better," Ben added.

The city also tabled a new eight million dollar sewage plant in favor of improvements to existing plants.