Creating the Town Center Plan

In Part 1, the background, objectives and membership of the Planning Advisory Board was described. In Part 2, the PAB gets down to work writing Sammamish’s first Comprehensive Plan. In Part 3 today, the focus shifts to the creation of the Town Center Plan, a sub-area of the Comprehensive Plan.

City_of_SammamishThe Sammamish Planning Advisory Board (PAB), tasked with writing the City’s first Comprehensive Plan, finished all elements except the complex topic of developing a commercial-office-retail element that was better than the strip malls created by King County.

These malls were formally known as Sammamish Highlands at NE 8th and 228th Ave. NE, the Pine Lake Center at 228th and Issaquah-Pine Lake Road and the 7-11 complex on East Lake Sammamish Parkway. Sammamish Highlands, not to be confused with the neighborhood of the same name at the far south end of the City on 228th, was more commonly known as the Safeway complex. This included the commercial stores across 228th (McDonald’s and other retailers) and eventually Saffron across NE 8th.

The Pine Lake Center was more commonly known as the QFC complex.

Alternatives for Commercial Development

When the first draft of the Comp Plan was completed, the PAB proposed several alternatives for commercial development. Under State Law, this was standard procedure. Usually Comp Plans had Alternatives 1, 2 and 3 and a No Action Alternative.

The No Action Alternative is self-evident: don’t do anything and proceed as before.

The alternatives contained in the Draft Comp Plan were as follows:

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Sammamish Town Center: Bigger is not better, nobody wants it anyway (Scroll down page for Community Center stuff)

In the Oct. 24 issue of the Sammamish Review, there is a long article about the Sammamish Town Center. A few paragraphs stood out to me.

There’s this, to set the stage:

But even as the council approved a document that lists its first goal as being “catalyze development in Town Center,” several councilmembers openly questioned whether the 2,000 residential units and up to 600,000 square feet of commercial development called for in the Town Center Plan was realistic given the changes in the economy since the plan was approved in 2008 after several years of public meetings.

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