ELST testimony to City Council tonight–here are some thoughts

We’re just hours away from the Sammamish City Council update by City Staff and the County staff over the pending development of Section 2A (7-11 area to the Issaquah City Limits) of the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

In my own comments planned for tonight during Public Comment, I will be giving an abbreviated version of what’s below (as much as I can in 3-5 minutes):

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County, city staff to present to Sammamish City Council on ELST March 3

A top King County Parks official, Kevin Brown, and Laura Philpot, deputy city manager for Sammamish, will present updates to the City Council tomorrow (March 3) on the controversies surrounding the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

Focus will be on Section 2A, that portion from the Issaquah City Limits north to 33rd St. (the 7-11), which is next on the County’s plan to remake the trail to its final design.

Missteps, lack of communication, and a variety of issues on the Northern section (Inglewood Hill Road to the Redmond City Limits) caused an uproar among some property owners, conflicts with the County and a huge embarrassment for the City government.

Following this, the City stepped up to pay close attention to the design for Section 2A, including submitting comments to the County by the Oct. 29 deadline. When the 90% design came out at the end of December, it appeared that neither citizen nor City comments were considered.

The City blew a gasket that its comments were apparently ignored. Philpot told the County that the City wouldn’t accept transfer of the development permit from the County or it may reject it outright. Any appeal by the County would take enough time that its federal funding would be withdrawn.

(The complex Inter Local Agreement between the City and County whereby the County does the permit processing is described in my January 17 post.)

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