ILWACO — A proposed street vacation drew public criticism at Ilwaco City Council’s April 22 meeting.

The vacation, Sahalee neighborhood improvements and city updates were focuses during the meeting.

Proposed street vacation

The council held a public hearing on a proposed right-of-way vacation on parts of Third and Fourth Avenue, located between Main Street and Eagle Street.

Councilors will discuss the street vacation at its next meeting. No official action was taken at Monday’s meeting.

Neighbors to the property oppose the project, arguing the vacation could “landlock” their properties.

“What’s the public’s interest in blocking Third and Fourth Streets?” questioned neighbor Charles Newlin. “It would be a major change of policy with no public interest served.”

Applicant Mike Colbach said the proposed vacation would allow his family to use the adjacent land as a driveway. The project wouldn’t impact neighbors, he said.

“We have no problem with a shared driveway, we’d just like to put our driveway there as well,” Colbach said.

Sahalee project finishes up

Councilors approved a contract which deems the Sahalee Water and Sewer Improvement Project as complete.

“I think the job was done well,” Councilor Kristen Mathison said. “Everything looks really nice.”

The project cost almost $2 million, finishing up at $1,984,362. Project funders included the state’s Department of Health, Department of Commerce Public Works Trust Fund and the Department of Ecology.

“I’m just glad to see it all wrapped up,” Councilor Matt Lesnau said.

Indian Creek property update

Councilors approved a resolution allowing work to move forward on the city’s possible land purchase surrounding its Indian Creek reservoir and watershed near Chinook.

The city intends to purchase land equal to the size of Cape Disappointment State Park, said Mayor Gary Forner.

Other council news

Fishing derby: The 27th Annual Black Lake Fishing Derby registered almost 140 children, a new record for the city, said City Clerk Stephanie Davis. The derby’s winning T-shirt design has been chosen.

City flag: A city flag design has been approved and is in the process of being created, Davis said.

Flushing wipes: Mathison suggested the city reach out to business owners to alert them about how detrimental flushable wipes are to the city’s sewer system. She will present a flyer for the city to use, which indicates how the wipes aren’t actually flushable. The city alerted residents about the issue alongside water and sewer bills.

The council’s next meeting: Scheduled for 6 p.m. on May 13. Council meetings are held at the city’s community room, 158 First Ave. N. The public is welcome to attend.

Alyssa Evans is a staff writer for the Chinook Observer. Contact her at 360-642-8181 or

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