Driven by two considerations, the Cannon Beach City Council considered a new sidewalk on Spruce Street at its Tuesday, May 12 meeting. “There are two objectives, one is environmental and one is ADA,” Public Works Director Dan Grassick said. “You have an immediate issue right now. You could be sued yesterday.”

The sidewalk project, estimated at about $75,000, was presented by Grassick, who told councilors that the sidewalk was needed to provide better drainage into Little Pompey drainage ditch and to meet potential liability concerns to potential liability issue mandated after a 2001 American with Disabilities Act suit.

According to Grassick, phase one of the project includes installation of stormwater separator units to provide pre-treatment screening for surface runoff from the down storm basins. The sidewalk will include a curb that directs street runoff to the treatment units. The sidewalk will also provide access ramps at several locations to meet regulatory accessibility requirements. The downtown business district was a specific area where the city agreed to construct amenities that would provide for safe and accessible pedestrian access.

Without the sidewalk, wheelchair-bound visitors have had to use the paved traffic portion of Spruce Street to reach a safer location, Grassick said.

Plans call for the east side of the sidewalk adjacent to the wetlands to incorporate a wood round-rail fence with the posts set in brackets bolted to the edge of the sidewalk base. The sidewalk would also provide access ramps at several locations to meet the regulatory accessibility requirements.

Councilor George Vetter said he wondered if there were a more aesthetically appealing way to handle the problem than “just throwing concrete down. We’re a town that prides itself on aesthetics, and concrete is not part of that.”

Mayor Sam Steidel suggested the use of concrete, with the option of future of enhancements to improve the aesthetic qualities of the sidewalk.

Council members gave Grassick the nod to move ahead.

“I’m going to present it to the design review board in July,” Grassick said on Wednesday. “They will either bless it or make me change it.”#


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