As drivers sit in traffic, Sammamish ponders up-zoning of Town Center

Even as Sammamish residents scream over traffic congestion, exacerbated over what proved to be fraudulent implementation of a traffic concurrency model intended to be sure the roads can handle growth, efforts are underway to sharply up-size the Town Center.

The Town Center was approved to have 600,000sf of commercial/retail/office space and 2,000 residential units. Transfer Development Rights (TDRs) already boosted the residential units a few hundred above the 2,000.

The Environmental Impact Study (EIS) studied impacts up to 700,000sf and 3,000 units. Anything above this would require a Supplement EIS, Kamuron Gurol, the Community Development Director, said at the time.

The development company, STCA, is working with staff to propose hiking the Town Center by as much as 250,000sf and up to 1,500 more residential units.

STCA is currently developing the Town Center west of 228th Ave.

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Metropolitan Market opens

March 22: Metropolitan Market, the anchor for the Sammamish Town Center’s commercial district at SE 4th and 228th Ave. SE, opened today to a 33 lb chocolate chip cookie for the long line of consumers that wrapped around to the fronting sidewalk.

The Sammamish Town Center commercial center at SE4th and 228th Ave. SE.

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Lawsuit questions legitimacy of Sammamish Town Center Plan

A lawsuit challenges the legitimacy of the Sammamish Town Center Plan following adoption of the 2015 Comprehensive Plan revisions in the state-required 10-year

Paul Stickney filed a lawsuit in King County Superior Court questioning the legitimacy of the Sammamish Town Center Plan.

Paul Stickney filed a lawsuit in King County Superior Court questioning the legitimacy of the Sammamish Town Center Plan.

update.

Paul Stickney and Richard Birgh, two residents of the Town Center who have commercial development aspirations, filed the lawsuit Aug. 12 after the Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board rejected a challenge on procedural grounds.

Sammamish Comment discovered the lawsuit while reviewing the number of lawsuits filed against the City, or that the City has filed against others, regarding land use actions.

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Town Center Moratorium dead, but growth issues heading toward Retreat

Valderrama

Deputy Mayor Ramiro Valderrama unleashed a firestorm of opposition to a building moratorium when he suggested one for the Sammamish Town Center.

The Sammamish City Council decided Tuesday to not pursue a proposal by Deputy Mayor Ramiro Valderrama to undertake a 60-day study that could have led to a building moratorium for the Town Center.

The TC is already under construction, but there remains about 40 acres for which a building permit application has yet to be filed.

The Council considered Valderrama’s suggestion after nearly two hours of public comment, nearly all of it opposing a moratorium

But the issue isn’t dead. Continue reading

“Greenwashing” in Sammamish: A Special Report

  1. Greenwashing (a compound word modeled on “whitewash”), or “green sheen,” is a form of spin in which green PR or green marketing is deceptively used to promote the perception that an organization’s products, aims or policies are environmentally friendly.–Wikipedia.

Since the 2003 Sammamish City Council election, in which environmental-leaning candidates swept the election, the Council prided itself on pursuing “green” policies and ordinances.

The City Manager was far less gun-ho, often lagging his own staff, especially when it came to a concept called Low Impact Development, or LID (not to be confused with Local Improvement Districts, also LID, a special tax option–so context of “LID” is always important to understand).

The current Council is comprised of what would ordinarily considered to be environmentalists. Of the seven, only Member Don Gerend leans “development” over the environment–or so its appears. Tom Odell and Bob Keller proved to have strong environmental credentials. Ramiro Valderrama evolved into a strong backing of the environment. Deputy Mayor Kathy Huckabay and Mayor Tom Vance not only consider themselves environmentalists but have an historical track record supporting this.

Image via Google Images. Click on image to enlarge.

Without question the leading environmentalist on the Council is three-term incumbent Nancy Whitten, who decided to retire at the end of this year. And Whitten has been increasingly critical of the collective Council’s direction on a number of environmental issues over the past four years.

While “greenwashing” isn’t the term that comes to the top of the conversation with Whitten, she didn’t disagree with its use when it comes to how Sammamish approaches the environment now. And she’s especially critical of Vance’s evolution away from his historical green leanings.

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