145th Citizen committee report on Community Forum

Monday, January 26, 2015

Notes from Robin Lombard, co-chair 145th Station Citizens' Committee

On Thursday, January 21, 2015, the Shoreline Preservation Society held a panel discussion on the potential impacts of the 145th subarea rezone around the new light rail station.
Jan 21 - Community Forum – Shoreline Preservation Society
Shoreline Preservation Society (SPS) is a state nonprofit (not sponsored by the city) offering a way for the community to respond to the light rail and resulting rezone.

Attendance – approximately 70 people, including two city council members
This was a casual meeting run by the Shoreline Preservation Society who brought in three panelists to discuss the potential effects of the re-zone and help citizens understand what they can do to make their voices heard.
Diane Pottinger (North City Water District) talked about the impact of the rezone on utilities:
Utility will try to predict what the water demand will be under various scenarios. Who pays for this? Developers will pay through extension, latecomer addition, or residents can tax themselves. Regular rates will not pay for the development.
Realtor Henry Goss talked about the impact on homeowners:
This is a big project, but it will take years. Lots of effects on homeowners. Example: Lake City Way from Bill Pierre up to 145th. What is the big picture for all the homes that will be replaced? The geography will have an effect. This is not going to happen tomorrow. There must be some county figures (King County’s Vision Plan 2040) to back up such huge rezones. Once the zoning is passed, we’ll have to see. (No one knows for sure what will happen.)
Brian Derdowski - Public Interest Associates talked about taking action:
None of this will happen without you. How is it that this rezone has gone two years and many people have just heard about it? Two things: You could spend 100s of hours studying this and you could learn that there are 100s of things more to learn. If you organize and work together you will engage in a process you will never forget. This is worth doing and you are not alone.
Lots of Q/A followed these presentations. Highlights:
  • What happens in the first 10 years sets the tone for the next 50. We need to make sure that we don’t get projects approved in the neighborhood that could set the wrong tone.
  • Is the city council obligated to follow community sentiment? No (but we do have the option to vote them out)
  • Potential zoning – we can ask for discretion where we tie zone phasing to specific events (such as rail actually running or upgraded sewers).
  • Rezone will provide certainty or uncertainty? If development is piecemeal that could be fracturing/cause uncertainty/result in value resting in land not house…with phasing it could provide certainty.


Janet Way January 27, 2015 at 9:53 AM  

Thank you Robin for this excellent account of our SPS event. And also thanks to everyone who attended and helped make it a success. We look forward to your further involvement and support to protect our community from the massive rezones being planned. Please continue to stay in touch and involved!

Unknown January 27, 2015 at 2:29 PM  

"Massive rezones". What a complete joke. This is small stuff, low-rise, medium density. A serious attempt to maximize the benefits of this billion-dollar investment in light rail would be mid- to high-rise.

Anonymous,  January 27, 2015 at 3:16 PM  

R-6 to MUR-140 isn't massive? Your comment is a joke!

Anonymous,  January 27, 2015 at 3:33 PM  

"A serious attempt to maximize the benefits of this billion-dollar investment in light rail would be mid- to high-rise."

A line right out of the Gospel of Sound Transit, Book of TOD, Yes-In-*Your*-Back-Yard.

Anonymous,  February 1, 2015 at 9:55 PM  

I disagreed with this location due to the tremendous traffic that's been on this street for decades. The "talking points" of the proponents dissuaded questions about 175th, which they said "had too much traffic," yet 145th has 1/3 more and erratic (at best) infrastructure, with almost as much traffic as Aurora has. Speaking of Aurora, we're close to 20 years since the process was begun on those 3 miles; we only have 8 years until L-Link is open, and 145th is 5 miles from Greenwood to Lake City Way. Further, it has one-third of the right-of-way of Aurora and, unless something's changed, multiple owners. The proponents have their work cut out to make this viable. And, I don't believe their repeated assertions that folks from Woodinville - 20 miles away - will drive to the 145th station and its 500-space parking garage when other closer alternatives, such as frequent Sound Transit buses from Woodinville and light rail from Lynnwood (11 mostly-freeway miles, to have 1,500 spaces) exist. I do continue my prediction, though, that folks will access this station from the east using 15th NE and 155th NE.

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