Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Marymoor Concert Series Line-Up

Friends who like Redmond Neighborhood Blog


Jun 3

6:00 PM at Marymoor Amphitheatre -RedmondWA
Jun 4

6:00 PM at Marymoor Amphitheatre -RedmondWA
Jun 5

6:00 PM at Marymoor Amphitheatre -RedmondWA
Jun 15

5:30 PM at Marymoor Amphitheatre -RedmondWA
Jun 16

6:15 PM at Marymoor Amphitheatre -RedmondWA
Jun 22

7:00 PM at Marymoor Amphitheatre -RedmondWA  

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Saturday Market is here to stay

Painting By Patti Simpson
During the Downtown/Education Hill Town Hall meeting tonight, a question was asked about the status of the Saturday Market.  Redmond Town Center (RTC) owns the land on which the market is sited. For several years rumors have been flying RTC was going to boot the market off their location for a higher use. 
Last night the air was cleared:  RTC is conditioned by the city so that only an open market is allowed on the site.  RTC couldn't force the market out by raising rent because only open markets are allowed and RTC would lose all their revenue.  Thus, the Saturday Market (or any other open market) will never be forced off its present location.

The Saturday Market is a cultural ICON for the city with it's location on Leary Way, a gateway to the city. The open market is here to stay!

Bob Yoder

The naming and history behind Evans Creek

This is a 2008 post

According to the Minutes for the July 17, 2008 Planning and Public Works Committee chaired by Councilmember Hank Margeson, the committee held a discussion about naming city streams. Mayor Marchione noted that "there is some debate regarding the current name of Evans Creek; the Historical Society believes the name of the stream is Martin’s Creek."  

In 1910, Ben Martin homesteaded on what is now known as Evans Creek. Below, is a brief description, provided by the Redmond Historical Society, on his history and life on the creek.  

Ben Martin’s homestead, c.1910
Martin, John “Ben” Benjamin 1827 - 1920:
Ben Martin was a Civil War veteran who fought for the North under Gen. Sherman.  John was a survivor of Gettysburg. He arrived in Redmond in 1875 coming with the John Perry family on a scow.  Read More >>

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Homeless Tent encampments, how to comfort and motivate the residents

This is a "comment" for the record I sent to the mayor and council about homeless encampments. They'll be having a study session about it soon.  
I've made many visits to Tent City 4 (TC4) encampments at St. Jude over the years and talked with the residents and on-site TC4 "camp managers".  I live 1/4 mile away from St. Jude.  In all the years St. Jude has hosted TC4 my family has never encountered a "safety problem or issue" (though we did worry about it early on). The camp residents seem docile and harmless to me.  I recommend warrants but I don't think background checks should be required.  I think the safety issue has been blown way out of proportion by some of those commenting at public meetings.   
I agree with the Amendment language that there be a REQUIREMENT for access of human services, especially "regional" organizations serving the Eastside. A good example of a regional human service organization is HERO HOUSE. Their mission is "to provide rehabilitation and employment programs for adults living with mental illness".  They have a van to transport WILLING residents to and from the organization.  Membership and all of their services are free. HERO HOUSE is located in Bellevue but they serve all the residents in King County. This organization is truly regional. They are very well financed with strong support from King County.   
Access to human services will help those willing to find permanent shelter.  Human service "access" should be a requirement not a recommendation of hosts and/or sponsors.  Residents should know about available human services; of course, residents shouldn't be required to use the services.  I recommend the burden of requiring access be put on the sponsoring groups rather than the hosts.   From my experience at St Jude, when the Father once committed to share Hero House literature with the residents, Tent City 4 "camp managers" sat on it  -- they could care less.  A requirement for access will produce better results if it's placed directly on the sponsor. Though host churches have good intentions they have many other things to do.
I hope Council can find a way to increase the duration at host churches to 6 months while keeping the frequency for both hosts to every one or two years. Lowering frequency will take "the burden" off our neighborhood.  Extending duration will give the regional and local human service organizations more time "to make a difference." 
Bob Yoder

HERO HOUSE website: 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

UPDATED: "Friends Who Like Redmond Neighborhood Blog," a new facebook group

Hear ye!  Hear ye!

Right off the press....

A new facebook group and news feed of popular blog posts dating back 10 years!

Become a member! Post your own stories!
Share with your friends!

Questions? Want to meet-up?  Come to my "coffee hour" at Soulfood, Friday's at 8:30 AM
First coffee is June 3rd

Friday, May 20, 2016

Sammamish River Trail users should plan for detours May though October

Redmond, WA – The City of Redmond advises Sammamish River Trail users to plan for periodic detours off the path from May 30, 2016, through October 31, 2016, due to temporary closures from construction of the Redmond Central Connector Trail Phase II (RCC II) project. The RCC II project will extend the trail 1.3 miles from Downtown, past the Redmond Puget Power Trail, to Overlake Christian Church along Willows Road. Trail detours will be limited to Mondays through Fridays from 7 am–4 pm, unless otherwise noted. 

The centerpiece of the RCC II trail project is the retrofit of the former railroad trestle over the Sammamish River with a new deck that will carry pedestrians and cyclists. The trestle spans over King County’s heavily used Sammamish River Trail. At times during construction, it will be necessary for the contractor to work on or near the Sammamish River Trail. When this occurs, the Sammamish River Trail will be temporarily detoured for the safety of trail users. The detour will be in place only when construction activities directly impact the trail. The trail will be opened for normal use once construction has concluded at the end of the day. >>

Construction Updates: Expect downtown road closures June through the Spring

Several construction projects in Downtown Redmond are scheduled to begin throughout the month of June, including the 2-Way Street Conversion of Redmond Way and Cleveland Street and two neighboring private development projects.
Construction project teams are working together to coordinate the work, impacts and communication to the community. In addition to these Construction Updates, the City will have staff on site reaching out and available to the community. We will be sharing updates on the projects, progress and road closures as events unfold. Currently:
- Expect to see start-up of the projects throughout June including signage, traffic control devices, job trailers, etc.
- The 2-Way Street Conversion project is expected to take approximately 18 months. The private development projects will be approximately 18-22 months. These are estimates at this time.
- Please expect pedestrian detour routes around the work zones. Please follow pedestrian sidewalk closures and detours.
- There will be two temporary construction street closures including:
• 168th Ave NE (near Redmond Way between Anderson Park and Sleep Train): Closure related to 2-Way Street Conversion project. Access will be from the north off NE 79th St. Closure estimated June 2016 through Fall 2017.
• NE 79th St (near Redmond Teen Center west of 166th Ave NE): Closure related to private development construction on both sides of NE 79th St. Local or limited access only. Teen Center parking and access available from the north off NE 80th Street. Closure estimated June 2016 through Spring 2018.
City of Redmond, Economic Development
Jill Smith,, 425.556.2448

Bike Thefts Are Up

Bike Thefts Are Up

Public Information Coordinator Becky Range from Redmond Police Department
Photo from Becky Range
Lots of bike thefts in the last few weeks...especially at the Overlake Transit Center and from apartments along Cleveland. Patrol has seen many secured with only a cable lock, and they are being easily cut. We encourage cyclists to use a strong u-lock and even better, a combination of a u-lock and a cable. See more tips in the attached photo or here

One particular bike was stolen from the parking garage near 168th Ave NE and NE 72 St. The victim had just purchased the bike, which was stolen from a locked bicycle cage located inside the garage. The chain-link fence that made the perimeter of the cage appeared to be cut, allowing access to the bicycle. It is possible the thief cut the cage in advance, as it appeared it had been zip-tied back together.

Thankfully, the victim provided a picture of the bike and then quickly located what appeared to be her stolen bike listed for sale on Offer Up. The original purchase price was $1,150 and it was listed for sale for $500.

An undercover officer was successful in setting up a meeting with the seller a few days later, who asked to meet in north Seattle. The seller rode up on the stolen bike. Officers identified and detained the individual without incident, who had not provided his real name on the listing. We were happy to reunite the bike with its rightful owner. The case is still being further investigated.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

A review of the recent city Hearing on homeless encampment policy -- my emphasis on mental health services

Last night, the city council held a very important Hearing for those interested in city tent encampments policy.   From an earlier discussion I had with a planning commissioner, I thought the Hearing was to focus on three provisions of the amendment:  1)  a requirement on the hosts (e.g. St. Jude). or sponsors (e.g. Tent City 4) to allow access to human services, 2) consideration of background checks and 3) the term of the permit.  But, based on Hearing input, the council decided to hold a study session to review the entire amendment including length of stay.

I had four minutes to speak.  My ask was to 1) require better access of human services, especially those servicing the Eastside.and 2) put the burden of requiring access on the sponsoring organizations. rather than the host churches.  Based on past experience with St Jude, when the Father once committed to share Hero House literature with the residents Tent City 4 sat on it. In my opinion, the requirement for access will produce better results if it's placed directly on the sponsor. Though host churches have good intentions they have many other things to do.  >>

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Mayor and Council are coming to our neighborhood for Q&A on Monday, May 23.

Save the Date!  

The Mayor and City Council are venturing out from City Hall and coming to Redmond Elementary for Q&A, Monday, May 23!

6:00 Reception
6:30 Q&A begins
Redmond Elementary Gymnasium 

See a brief slide show of their first meeting in the View Point neighborhood HERE

Saturday, May 14, 2016

UPDATED: A review of "Bob and Shirley Ferguson's presentation" at this Saturday's Historical Society Speakers Program

My wife and I went to the Redmond Historical Society speakers program today. It's been a long time since we went to one.  The program featured a terrific presentation by Bob and Shirley Ferguson, owners of the Ben Franklin Crafts and Frames store.  The Ferguson's two sons who now run the store were on stage spicing up the talk.  Read More >>

Friday, May 13, 2016

Join a Neighborhood Conversation with Mayor John Marchione and the City Council

On Monday, May 23, 2016, City Council will host its second in a new series of neighborhood conversations. These forums are a casual and convenient way for residents to interact with their elected officials. Each meeting will be held in a different neighborhood venue, and the meetings will be open for residents to direct the topics—whether it’s a neighborhood issue or the vision for the City. 

“We were delighted that so many people came to connect at our first Neighborhood Conversation forum,” said Redmond City Council President Hank Margeson. “As we look for new ways to engage with the community, folks are eager to share and learn more about a variety of topics important to their neighborhood.” 

This forum will be held in the school gymnasium at Redmond Elementary in the Downtown neighborhood. Community members can connect with their neighbors and elected officials, learn about City projects, and write down questions for Council. There will be a reception at 6 pm, and the meeting will last from 6:30–7:30 pm. Council will answer questions, discuss current projects in the neighborhood, and listen to ideas and thoughts from the community. 

A roomful of people attended the inaugural (April 28, 2016) Neighborhood Conversation at Audubon Elementary. The meeting was entirely focused on questions from the residents and included everything from transportation and school overcrowding to housing and zoning issues. For more information on this forum and future Neighborhood Conversations, please visit Each meeting will be “kid-friendly” and light snacks will be provided. 

For questions and more information, contact Lisa Rhodes or 425-556-2427.

EvergreenHealth and Bloodworks Northwest Expand Partnership

EvergreenHealth, Bloodworks Northwest Expand Partnership to
Open In-House Transfusion Lab 

Kirkland/Seattle, WA – EvergreenHealth and Bloodworks Northwest recently opened an onsite transfusion lab on the EvergreenHealth campus in Kirkland, enhancing efficiency in bloodwork services and testing for patients on the Eastside. The joint initiative expands existing services provided by Seattle-based Bloodworks to EvergreenHealth patients, and further eliminates the barriers of time and proximity for critical transfusion services.  Read More >>

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Shin Yu Pai - The City of Redmond's 2016 Poet Laureate

Shin Yu Pai
Shin Yu Pai
Earlier this year, the City Council approved $10,000 to hire Shin Yu Pai as our Poet Laureate for the 2015-2016 year. Shin Yu Pai is a Poet, Curator, Oral Historian, Photographer, and Educator.

According to the city, the purpose of our Poet Laureate is to:

1. Broaden the awareness of poetry.
2. Express the spirit of Redmond culture through poetry.
3. Raise the level of discourse during discussions and debates in the City.

Have you ever heard her recite poetry? Please comment below this post.  I've heard her once at a city hall council meeting. I sat towards the back of the chambers and had a difficult time hearing and understanding her.  Frankly, I found her a bit over my head. Hopefully, we'll see more of Shin Yu Pai in a better setting as we get closer to the summer. 

You can find a full description of Shin's background here.  She has impressive credentials.

Bob Yoder

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Expect increases in solid waste bills

Redmond, WA – The City of Redmond is reminding residents of possible changes in their solid waste bills. As announced last August, the City negotiated a new solid waste contract with Waste Management. Along with increased collection options, customers may also have experienced increases to their solid waste bills. Beginning January 1, 2016, residential rates increased between 13% and 20%, depending on container size. Read More >>

UPDATE: Hopelink is sponsoring free financial education classes at the library

Our classes are held the first and third Tuesday of the month at the Redmond Library (15990 NE 85th Street) from 6:00-7:30.  All classes are free and open to the public.  So far we have the following scheduled:

May 17th – Budgeting
June 7th – Credit
June 21st - Banking

Hopelink has agreed to bring their services to tent encampment residents for one-on-one training.   

Cheryl Hamamoto
Hopelink Financial Education Volunteer Coordinator

Musings on Redmond Arts

There's art and then there's entertainment and a mix of both. I'd like to see a night club in Redmond where we can dance and listen to live music -- all year long.  Hopefully the OneRedmond Foundation, Chaired by Council member John Stilin, will consider promoting this or similar kinds of downtown entertainment.  

Soulfood Coffee House is Redmond's go-to-place to enjoy musicians and artists like Clint McCune, jazz, an open mic, poetry readings, etc. Would Soulfood go so far as to include East Indian music, etc?  Of course, that would be up to the free market. 

For years Clint and Sara Peflrey's Soulfood Coffee House was "the heart and soul" of Redmond. (My opinion is not influenced by the name of the shop.)  I'll never forget the "opening night" for Redmond's first poet laureate. She performed at Soulfood and the TV media covered it region-wide. Council Member Hank Margeson was there, everyone. 

When Clint and Sara sold Soulfood they left somewhat of a cultural void. 

For several years it seemed the city wandered and probed, seeking a new harbor for our "soul." Will it be the Downtown Park? The Historic Core?  Both?

I like how the city is installing art that's representative of our history. The historic core clock tower was renamed Naomi Hardy Clock Tower.  An  "erratic" representing the glacial age constructed of old railroad rail plates. A railroad signal installation. The Mayor said a totem pole installation is planned near Lower Bear Creek. There's the small park with wood Indian carvings near the Slough. The original school bell is installed on the Public Safety building. An historic marker sits next to Perrigo Springs -- the first water source for Indians and pioneers. 

The "glacial erratic"
Is it remotely possible the city will go so far as to install outdoor East Indian art, European art, Chinese art, ecetera?  After a botched City Hall installation designed by Portland artist Ed Carpenter (the water feature wouldn't work), why did the city hire him again for the glacial erratic? The erratic was first promoted as place for kids to play. Today it sits on the future transit corridor, in an obscure RTC location, under-appreciated and little-used accept for the few kids that find it.  Later, Mr. Carpenter did the interesting railroad signal installation in the linear park. Please not Carpenter again; please not a one-artist town.  

Bob Yoder, opinion
Tell Mayor and Council what's on your mind when they visit Ed Hill on May 23
Listen to Clint McCune's music
A slideshow of Graffiti art in "Edge Skate Park"  

Monday, May 9, 2016

School Bond measure passes, work begins

Design & Construction Advisory formed to review new projects

Redmond, Wash. - King County Elections certified the final results for Lake Washington School District’s  Proposition 1, Bonds to Relieve Overcrowding and Enhance Learning Environments, on Friday, May 6.  The measure passed with 66.28% voting to approve the measure. The measure needed a supermajority of 60% to pass. With certification of the measure, the district is moving forward with the projects funded by it.  Read More >>

The city honors Redmond Historical Society legend, names the downtown clock tower "The Naomi Hardy Clock Tower"

<p>The Redmond clock tower has been named after local history advocate Naomi Hardy. <em>Andy Nystrom, Redmond Reporter</em></p> -
The Naomi Hardy Clock Tower - Credit Redmond Reporter
Redmond, WA – The clock tower and kiosk that anchors Redmond’s Historic Core along Leary Way now has a name honoring local history advocate, Naomi Hardy. The Redmond Historical Society, and long-timers who knew Redmond when it had just one traffic light will honor her on Saturday, May 21, 2016, at 10:30 am. 

“Naomi Hardy was tireless in her dedication to Redmond’s history. She understood the impact of preserving historic places and stories,” said Mayor John Marchione. “Through the formation of the Redmond Historical Society, she ensured a long-lasting celebration of our local history.” 

“The Naomi Hardy Clock Tower” will be dedicated by Mayor John Marchione as a tribute to the founding force behind the Redmond Historical Society. Naomi Hardy was determined to research and share Redmond’s history. She began by gathering a few other local history buffs in 1999 and then seeing the society flourish to one with more than 140 members in just a decade. 

"No one had a bigger impact on the development of the Redmond Historical Society than co-founder Naomi Hardy," says Society President Joe Townsend. “Naomi loved to say ‘History is happening in Redmond.’ Naming the tower after her makes Naomi a larger part of that history.” 

Hardy passed away in 2012 but her legacy includes having done all the research for the heritage kiosk that’s part of the clock tower, as well as writing the first walking tour for the historic core. She also wrote the Society’s book “Redmond Reflections” and amassed hundreds of names for a historical “Who’s Who of Redmond.” 

A plaque and sign in Hardy’s honor let passers-by know that one person can make a significant difference in their community. For Hardy, it was sharing Redmond’s history so that long-time residents would feel treasured and transplants would learn about Redmond’s roots—each having that knowledge in common with their new neighbors. 

To learn more about Hardy and the Redmond Historical Society, The Naomi Hardy Clock Tower is at O'Leary Park, on the corner of Leary Way and Redmond Way. Street parking is available in the immediate area. 

For questions and more information, contact Mary Hanson, Senior Vice President, at or 425-885-2919; or Kim Dietz, Senior Planner, at or 425-556-2415.

Important Hearing on temporary encampments, May 17

The City Council will hold a public hearing concerning temporary encampments on May 17, 7:30pm 15670 NE 85th Street in the Council Chambers at Redmond City Hall, 15670 NE 85th St. The purpose of the hearing is to consider further provisions related to human service organization access to temporary encampments and background checks. For more information contact David Lee (dlee@redmond.gov425-556-2462).

Colleen Kelly
City of Redmond