Transit-Oriented land use plan for Central Lake Forest Park

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Lake Forest Park Central SubArea
Planning for Sound Transit

The City of Lake Forest Park is about to begin work on a transit-oriented land use plan for Central Lake Forest Park. In 2004, the City completed its first visioning process for the area and started laying the groundwork to transition the Town Center into a mixed-use center with housing, as well as retail and public spaces.

Unfortunately, after adopting a set of design guidelines and regulations intended to carry out that vision, the economic downturn hit and the bottom fell out of the housing market.

With the completion of the enhancements to Lyon Creek culverts and the passage of Sound Transit 3 (ST3) in 2016, there is renewed interest in updating this vision. 
There is a need to think on a larger scale, integrating transit-oriented development into a vision for a town center 50 years from now that offers more than can be accommodated within the confines of the shopping center.

Between 2017 and 2024, Sound Transit will plan and build a bus rapid transit (BRT) system that will pass through the Central Subarea as part of a $54 billion ST3 extension of the mass transit system.

Part of the ST3 planned investment includes 25 blocks of sidewalks along both sides of SR 522 to allow access to bus stops, as well as a 300-vehicle parking garage creating a transit center within the Central Subarea.

The ST3 calendar is not the friend of a lengthy planning process. Link Light Rail comes to neighboring Shoreline in 2023 and the BRT is scheduled to be operational by 2024.

Early estimates are 30% engineering will be done by mid-to-late 2019. The City’s plan needs to be on that bus! The tentative schedule is to complete the plan, implementing regulations, and the necessary mitigation by the end of 2018.

The first step is to hire a consultant team. A request for proposals from potential consultants was published in late May. The Council will likely make a decision on the consultant in July or August. 

By September, it is anticipated the project team will host an event to exchange ideas with citizens about a vision for Central LFP in 50 years.


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