Pivotal hearing in Gerend vs. Sammamish will be held tomorrow at city hall

By Miki Mullor
Editor

Tomorrow, Friday, March 6, at 9am in Sammamish Council Chambers, the Growth Management Hearing Board of Central Puget Sound will hold a hearing on the merits in the Don Gerend v. City of Sammamish case over the city’s new concurrency rules. 

The board granted the Sammamish Comment’s request to record and broadcast the hearing to the public. The City of Sammamish agreed to broadcast it live on Channel 21 starting at 9am.  A recording of it will be available on the City’s YouTube Channel. 

UPDATE: due to public health restrictions, the hearing is closed to the public.

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STCA, Town Center developer, covers Gerend’s PAC $70,000 debt

By Miki Mullor
Editor

STCA, the Town Center developer owned by Matt Samwick, has contributed $70,882.80 to former Mayor Don Gerend’s Livable Sammamish PAC.

Gerend and Kathy Huckabay, also a former mayor of Sammamish, were the only citizen contributors to Livable Sammamish. Gerend was the public face of the political action committee.

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Controversial 400 homes Town Center project moves forward – reaches a critical milestone

By Miki Mullor
Editor

  • STCA filed a permit application for Town Center Phase 1 on Nov. 4, revealing more details.
  • This project was issued a controversial certificate of concurrency in August.
  • City Council ordered an audit of the certificate of concurrency – that has yet to start.

STCA LLC’s first project in the Town Center area has been granted a “complete application” status by city staff. The significance of the status is that this particular project is now legally “vested, meaning any future change to the development code, such as density, design limitations or concurrency, will not apply to it.

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Fact and myth, truth and spin about the Town Center Plan

By Scott Hamilton

Guest Contributor

There is a continuing effort to claim the Town Center will divert growth from the rest of Sammamish. This is a falsehood based on the current set of facts on the ground (so-to-speak).

Credit: Patrick Husting. Satirical rendering of the Town Center.

Here are the facts:

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Seattle-based Sammamish Town Center developer pours money into Council elections

By Miki Mullor
Editor 

  • R.D. Merrill of Seattle contributed $25,000 to “Livable Sammamish” PAC (Political Action Committee), headed by former Mayor Don Gerend and former Council Member Kathy Huckabay.
  • R.D. Merrill partnered with STCA to develop Phase 1 of the Town Center, a 419 unit project and 98,000 sq/ft of retail, located on SE 4th St.
  • “Livable Sammamish” is opposing “Sammamish Life”, a Sammamish residents PAC headed by Michael Scoles.
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Town Center developer wines and dines local politicians at closed City Plaza

By Miki Mullor
Editor 

The City Plaza in front of the Sammamish City Hall was closed off on Sunday, Sep 15, for a private event hosted by Sammamish Chamber of Commerce and  sponsored by STCA, the Town Center apartments developer (also known as Innovation Realty).  

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City staff overruled its own engineer in favor of STCA’s engineer on Town Center traffic impact

By Miki Mullor 
Editor

Controversy erupted in August when the City of Sammamish announced that STCA’s Town Center Phase I project passed traffic concurrency. 

The City Council convened for a special meeting Aug. 20 to question how was it that this project, 419 homes and commercial space, that has failed concurrency for nine month suddenly passed it.

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Now, emails obtained by the Sammamish Comment through a public records request reveal that city staff inexplicably overruled its own engineer in favor of STCA’s engineer when forecasting the number of car trips the project would generate. 

The staff’s decision lowered the forecasted traffic impact of STCA Phase I by at least 19% in the AM and 30% in the PM peak hours. 

In order to fully understand the implications of ignoring the city traffic engineer and accepting STCA’s traffic consultant data instead, some background is necessary. 

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