By Don Nelson
The Town of Winthrop has settled on a plan to modify streetlights on Highway 20 near the Winthrop Barn to reduce glare.
Rick Karro, the town’s public works director, has been experimenting with modifications that direct more light downward to avoid a distracting glare that is noticeable at night. The latest effort, which involves installation of a metal shield, won the Town Council’s approval at last week’s council meeting.
Karro said he would start the process of similarly modifying other streetlights on that portion of the road.
In other business, the town signed a contract with the state Recreation and Conservation Office to finalize a $365,000 state grant to continue work on the Susie Stephens Trail through town.
The money, which will be matched with local funds and in-kind contributions, will be used to construct about sixth-tenths of a mile of trail in the second phase of trail construction. That work will include extending the trail from Norfolk Road south to Highway 20, and development of part of the riverwalk project along the Methow River.
Town planner Rocklynn Culp said the project is behind schedule but work should begin soon.
Gene Westlund, owner of the Winthrop Inn, encouraged the council to keep pushing ahead on the riverwalk project, which he said would be another attraction for the town.
“Any amenity will benefit us,” Westlund said. “We need to do it now.”