Port Townsend GIS Coordinator Tyler Johnson, left, resident Kris Nelson, interim public works director David Peterson and resident Steve Mader discuss the closure of Adams Street on Tuesday at the Port Townsend Community Center. (Zach Jablonski/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Townsend GIS Coordinator Tyler Johnson, left, resident Kris Nelson, interim public works director David Peterson and resident Steve Mader discuss the closure of Adams Street on Tuesday at the Port Townsend Community Center. (Zach Jablonski/Peninsula Daily News)

Public prefers to keep Adams Street closed

Ideas include conversion into park, walking path

PORT TOWNSEND — Many Port Townsend residents want to see a one-block section of Adams Street remained closed.

About 15 people attended an open house Tuesday night at the Port Townsend Community Center, where city officials answered questions about the project.

A public comment period is open through March 18, and committees also will accept input as they discuss potential recommendations.

Comments can be emailed to city engineer Laura Parsons at [email protected]

Kris Nelson, a former president of the Port Townsend Main Street program, said she’s in favor of the street staying closed and wants to see it used as a park.

“I see it as an unusual opportunity,” Nelson said at the open house. “It doesn’t harm anyone to keep it closed and turn it into at park.”

Adams Street is one of the few streets that connect downtown to uptown Port Townsend. However, none of the houses along the street have driveways that open to it.

Nelson’s idea would be to turn it into a linear park and terrace parts of the street for tables, to keep pedestrian access and allow bicycle access.

“I think it’s a very unusual, fantastic opportunity to make something great,” Nelson said. “To me, it could hopefully turn into a hidden treasure for locals.”

Parsons said the city is trying to decide between opening or keeping the street closed. No decisions have been made.

Another common idea Parson has received is to use the street as a pedestrian path only.

No residents who favored reopening the street provided comment Tuesday night.

The block-long portion of the road has been closed for nearly a year, when it was used as a staging area for a construction crew that installed sidewalks on Jefferson Street.

The city’s Active Transportation Advisory Board will meet today at 4:30 p.m. with a public comment period in the first floor conference room at City Hall, 250 Madison St.

The Transportation Committee, which will gather public comments throughout, will have another comment period when it meets at 3 p.m. March 18.

The Transportation Committee will make a recommendation to the full City Council, which will make the final policy decision.

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Jefferson County reporter Zach Jablonski can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5, or at [email protected].

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