Sunday, February 17, 2019

UPDATED: LWSD plans $20,750,000 land sale


No photo description available.Rose Hill Property was acquired many years ago to use for a potential school site. After the property was acquired, the City of Redmond approved an ordinance requiring that the location of a school have a significant setback from the gas pipeline (500 feet) on the eastern side of the property. Using the 500-foot set back from the property line results in City of Redmond code not permitting a school to be constructed within about 70% of the property. The District would be left with usable area of approximately 3.21 acres which is about 30% of the property. The remaining buildable area would not support the construction of a school.

In accordance with law, the district obtained an appraisal that concluded the fair market value of the property was $11,925,000. The District, with the assistance of a real estate broker, marketed the sale of the property which continued into early 2019. Many local and national developers expressed interest in purchasing the property.

The District entered into a Vacant Land Purchase and Sale Agreement with DR Horton, subject to seller and buyer contingencies, to sell the property for $20,750,000.

It is expected it will take approximately 15 months for the buyer to obtain plat approval from the City of Redmond with a closing to occur in the summer of 2020. The funds from the sale of the property will be reserved for future property acquisition.

Source:  2/19/19 Board Packet 

Of note:   The gas trunk line is a "stone's throw" east of Rose Hill Elementary.

Friday, February 15, 2019

EDITED" Redmond Blog "About Us" is updated for 2019

Image result for redmond neighborhood map images
Redmond neighborhoods

I've updated Redmond Neighborhood Blog "About Us" for 2019.  

Find it here

-- Bob Yoder

Construction of Redmond Technology Station parking garage underway

Image may contain: one or more people and outdoor
Credit/ Ryan Bianchi 
A December photo of construction for the future parking garage at the Redmond Technology transit station.  

-- Ryan Bianchi, Community Outreach Specialist for Sound Transit 
   Source:  East Link Light Rail

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

EvergreenHealth Named Among America's 100 Best Hospitals

EvergreenHealth Named Among America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Three Years

Kirkland, Wash. – For the third year in a row, EvergreenHealth has been named as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals by Healthgrades for consistent, year-over-year superior clinical performance across a broad spectrum of care. [Comprehensive psychiatric care is not available, BY] The distinction places EvergreenHealth in the top two percent of more than 4,500 hospitals nationwide. 

Record Redmond snow storm hits the neighborhoods

Pam in front of our house on Education Hill
The three storms ended after three days and left 23 inches of snow on our deck railing.  So much fun for making snowmen and sledding.....but so dangerous to be on the the back neighborhood roads.  Besides slipping and sliding you have to look-out for falling tree limbs.  We are praying for continued mild winds and power. 

-- Bob Yoder  2/12/2019, 11:51 AM, light mixed-rain/snow

City snow storm update #3

Tuesday, February 12, 9:42 a.m.

Road conditions are unsafe. We continue to ask the community not to drive unless absolutely necessary. Do not abandon your car – It will be towed.
City Hall is open Tuesday, February 12 with limited service

UPDATED: Cubed 6-story apartments offering significant move-in incentives

A planned Redmond rental
"Station House" sent me this unsolicited offer 6-weeks after I inquired about pricing  and when I told them, no thanks, that I' decided to stay in my house.  (Downsizing to their small apartments would be almost impossible after living in our house for 32 years.)  There appears to be a vacancy problem?  Anyone know pricing and offers for the "Triangle?"  Are developers ahead of themselves and light rail?    BY

Here's their e-mail: 

"Thank you for your recent interest in Station House Apartments! We wanted to reach out and update you on our newest leasing specials:
  • For the next 3 applicants we are offering 6 weeks free if you move in February on select floor plans. These floor plans include our large open one bedroom, our traditional 1 bedroom, and all our 1 bedroom plus dens.
  • If you are looking for a move in date further out, we are offering one month free on move ins up to 90 days away!
  • If you tour and lease within 24 hours you can receive 3 months of free parking.
  • If you rent a one bedroom with loft you can receive a $500 visa gift card.
All these specials can be applied together if applicable. 

Please feel free to give our leasing office a call for more information or to schedule your tour today! We hope to see you soon!"

Station House Leasing Team
(425) 242-1208

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Redmond Mayor Declares State of Emergency


CONTACT Lisa Maher, Communications & Marketing Manager 
Redmond, WA – Mayor John Marchione has declared a state of emergency for Redmond, Washington due to the major snow event overnight and the continued winter storm warning in effect through 4:00 p.m. today. Redmond received over six inches of snow in the last twenty-four hours and is expecting continued accumulation today. Heavy snow is weighing down tree limbs and the National Weather Service is predicting increased wind over the next few hours. Tree limbs and power lines may be affected.
“This proclamation will allow the City to take additional actions to keep the Redmond community safe”, said Mayor Marchione. “We are requesting that you stay indoors and off the roads unless it’s an emergency”, said Marchione. “If you have to go out, please take it very slow and don’t abandon your vehicles in the roadways.”
In preparation for what may be a windy afternoon and evening, we recommended that you:
  • Remember not to touch downed power lines and stay back a minimum 35 feet
  • Charge cell phones and mobile devices in case of a power outage
  • Download the PSE mobile outage app to track and report outages, check status and get estimated restoration times, or visit
  • Do not bring generators or grills indoors
You can view the signed Proclamation of Emergency on the City website. The City will continue to keep residents informed with updates to the City website, as well as Facebook (@CityofRedmond) and Twitter (@CityOfRedmond) as information becomes available. To view the City of Redmond snow and ice response routes, visit To learn more about the latest weather conditions and predictions, visit the National Weather Service website at
Residents can view live traffic cameras on the City’s website at For questions and more information contact Lisa Maher, Communications & Marketing Manager, at or 425-556-2427. This press release is available on

Monday, February 4, 2019

Redmond Council member Hank Margeson named Treasurer of Sound Cities Association

Redmond Councilmember Hank Margeson has been selected to serve as the 2019 Treasurer of the Sound Cities Association (SCA), which represents 38 King County cities and provides a regional voice for more than one million people. He will be one of five individuals to serve on the SCA Executive Committee.

“Councilmember Margeson will help SCA continue to be an important regional catalyst in addressing the challenges and opportunities that face King County communities,” said Deanna Dawson, SCA Executive Director. “He has a tremendous track record in creating innovative partnership and initiatives that create solutions to local and regional issues. We look forward to his leadership in the coming year.”

“Councilmember Margeson has a long history of leading on regional issues and I am pleased that he has been elected Treasurer of the SCA Board,” Councilmember Claudia Balducci, King County Council. “In my experience, he shows up, he pays attention, and he asks hard questions. All of which make him a great choice to help lead SCA. I look forward to working with him in his new role and wish him great success.”

"Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!"

View from my front door, 8 inches -- Ed Hill


Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Opinion: Another six-story apartment building coming to "Bedmond"

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"Bedmond is the new Redmond" 😁


LAND-2018-00869, LMC Marymoor 
Neighborhood:  Southeast Redmond near future Marymoor Transit Station 
Description:  Proposal to construct (1) six story and (2) five story multi-family residential buildings with commercial space 
Location:  17611 NE 70th Street
Applicant:  Rocky Flores with Encore Architects
Prior Review Date:  09/12/18, 12/06/18 & 12/20/18
Staff Contact:  David Lee, 425-556-2462 or
Review Materials:  Memo   Materials

Click "Materials" and "Memo" for pictures and details of the proposed buildings.

In regards to staff's review and comments, staff believes the changes meet the intent of the goal of exhibiting “eclecticism”.  (What do you "believe?) "The mix of materials, the unique building shape/massing, and art interventions serve to make a statement gateway to the young Marymoor Design District." says a planner.

Comment:  This project is still under review by your Council, two residents and the Arts Commission.  After you review this pre-application (click Materials and Memo) you can decide for yourself if the project is eclectic.  If not, contact the Arts Commisson or  I personally think the City should hold a Community meeting to discuss the art here and staff's ideas of eclecticism.   

Says a City planner:  "The Arts Commission was previously briefed on the integration of art into the buildings and general approach of how art was to be used throughout the site in November. The concepts and proposed placement of art on the site was met with very favorable comments and excitement. A Call for Art was released shortly after the Arts Commission meeting. The shortlist of artists, and examples of their work, were presented to the Arts Commission at the January 10, 2018 meeting. Much like the approach and placement of the art, the shortlist of artists was met with a very positive reception. The next stage of the art process is to award the project to the artists and receive conceptual drawings."

Source:  Design Review Board page

-- Bob Yoder, opinion

Monday, January 28, 2019

OPINION: Planned development on corner of Willows & 124th brings challenges and opportunities

Image result for traffic congestion on street corner
Could something like this happen here? Maybe.
Updated 1/29, 1:01 PM

Quadrant is working with the City to develop "Business District" property at the intersection of NE 124th Street and Willows Road on the Southwest corner.

Here goes. 

The Applicant (Fred Proctor) is proposing a mixed-use development consisting of approximately 370 residential units with a variety of housing types that would include for-sale townhomes, triplex and traditional for-rent apartment style dwellings. The development would also include a minimum of 20,000 sq. ft. of ground-level or stand-alone retail or commercial space, to include neighborhood-scale commercial uses, office, and/or day care center uses.

Transportation:  Willows Road is already congested and traffic is poor here but Council member Myers calls the development "a ten minute community" where many of the residents can work nearby, I assume keeping some cars off the road, and with shopping at Totem Lake.  A necessary signal on 124th is sure to slow traffic.  To mitigate traffic the City will try to work with Metro for all day service.  Right now it's AM / PM.  I won't be driving though that corner at all costs. A new sidewalk on 124th is intended to connect a northern and western trail I assume for pedestrian and bicycle mobility?

The range of housing types creates needed flexibility to integrate with the site and creates more variation in housing affordability:

  >10% of the townhomes will be at 80% of average monthly income.
  >10% of the apartments will be at 70% of average monthly income.

The development will include open space tracts, landscaped active and passive recreation, a trail network, and potentially, a gateway/bike rest stop feature on the northeast corner of the site.  Open space is 20% of the site.

Green development incentives specific to the site are 1) electric vehicle charging, 2) green roofs, 3) solar panels on townhomes, 4) solar panels on community buildings.  Quadrant is required to use two of the four options.  Council member Myers said solar is a poor choice for our region since "there is a -500% rate of return."

What's your opinion?

For development diagrams, plans and mapping click this link.

  -- Bob Yoder, opinion

Source:  1/27/2019 Council study session & memo

Friday, January 25, 2019

UPDATED: Redmond Council to hold Annual Retreat

Image result for Marymoor village community center
Marymoor Village Community Center
retreat location
Council President Angela Birney announced in this week's Study Session the annual Council retreat will be Saturday, February 9th, 9-3 pm. The retreat location is Marymoor Village community center. Though it's open to the public only to watch, I for one will be joining others planting trees and shrubs in Idylwood Park.  Council member Hank Myers suggested the last 2-3 hours should be private so Council can discuss various City issues of concern without staff around. 

Council goals:  Hank Myers wants to instill agility and creativity.   Steve Fields wants to enhance community involvement at every level.  He asked to "spend less time being taught and more time discussing."  Jeralee Anderson wants to understand roles and responsibilities (mayor/council/staff.)  Hank Margeson wants to provide a free form discussion.

Police Chief Kristi Wilson said each City director will be next to a poster board facilitating discussion with two council members per board -- and the council members rotating amongst each other.  Steve Fields joked the Chief will be directing traffic. :)

Bob Yoder

Source:  Council Study Session, 1/22/19

Thursday, January 24, 2019

UPDATED: Council Committee notes - City website / Neighborhood Conversations

"Finance, Administration and Communication" Council meeting talking points:

The City Website:  Phase One involved community outreach and is complete.  Phase Two is underway and involves building out the design.  90% of the design is done with 5,000 pages reduced to 1500 pages.  (This just gives you and idea how outdated this website is; many of us have been asking for a new website for almost a decade.)  In response to Council member Steve Fields' question about how many employees were involved in Phase Two, Communications Director Lisa Mayre said 50 staff representing all departments participated in the updates.  12- 15 "super users" from planning and land use played a major role.  Mr. Myers asked for Search engine improvements.  Apparently, we'll have them. (I get better luck on google.)  We can expect more photos and videos too. Launch month is February.

Neighborhood Conversations:   Jill Smith is now a member of the Communications team and will be running the "Neighborhood Conversations" programs.  I believe she was, and still is, the City's economic development manager.  It appeared Council will continue to have their "conversation" events, as usual, in the single family home neighborhoods, however, the idea of a daytime business meeting was well received by all members.  Council member Fields "thought there should be a minimum of 3 to five meetings."  He suggested Microsoft could "invite us."  He advised keeping politics out of the events since it's an election year.  Council member Jeralee Anderson suggested holding the daytime business conversation in the Downtown Park weather permitting.  Though she works (as does Margeson, Fields, and Carson) with proper notice she could attend. It was decided the events be held in the summer after school's out distancing themselves from the November election.  Carson, Myers, Birney, and Margeson's terms end December 31, 2019. 

-- Bob Yoder

Source:  "Finance, Administration and Communications" Council meeting, 1/22/19.


Image result for Hank Myers redmond photo
Hank Myers
Credit/Redmond Reporter
Hank has served on Redmond’s City Council since January 2008 and is now serving his third term. He has served on advisory boards for Metro Transit and the Bellevue School District. Councilmember Myers is a Transportation Economist working in all modes of transportation including experience in commercial aviation, public transit, and passenger ferry service. Hank began his professional career with Hughes Airwest as a regulatory affairs specialist before moving to the northwest to become Director of Government Affairs and Pricing for Alaska Airlines. He has a Bachelor’s degree in English from California State University. Hank currently represents the City on the Local Hazardous Waste Management Coordinating Committee (LHWMCC) and on the Water Resource Inventory Area 8 (WRIA 8) Salmon Recovery Council. A 42-year resident and living in the Viewpoint area of Redmond, Hank is married to Christine and has two grown children. He likes to spend time volunteering with Green Redmond and at the Center for Wooden Boats.

UPDATED: Favorable City revenue / expense trend

Melissa Files, Director of City Finance reported this Tuesday that similar to the prior month, "revenue spiked 6% over target while expenditures were 3% under target.  Ms. Files indicated the reasons for this favorable report were similar to earlier monthly reports, as follows:

She stated: "Sales tax on construction took a big jump to $5 million in December. Usually it's in the $2.3 million range.  Everything that has to do with development review - taxes, licensing, and permits - contributed to the favorable outcome." 

Council member Steve Fields said "It looked like there were 4 months similar to what you described.  Does this begin to present a trend?"  Files answered, "Yes," that she was anticipating this in her forecast for 2019 but didn't expect it this soon.  Mr. Fields said "I appreciate this vigilance because I think it's important to our decision-making to know where we're at on our revenue projections." 

Files said her December report was subject to change.  Presiding Officer Hank Hank Margeson he looks forward to Ms. Files formal report in February.   

Image result for steve fields photo redmond
Council member Steve Fields 
Source:  "Finance, Public Administration, and Communication" Council meeting of 1/22/2019.


Steve Fields has lived in Redmond for over 30 years. He worked across all functions of government in his positions at King County and the City of Seattle in the Executive offices. Fields guided elected officials on policy, budget, and operational improvements. He advised department heads and their staff to help the government perform better. He currently represents the City of Redmond as a member of the Eastside Transportation Partnership (ETP). Fields is also a Redmond small business owner with his wife.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Community tree planting event cancelled owing to snow storm

Help plant over 60 trees and 400 shrubs and groundcovers at Idylwood Park. The plantings contribute to the restoration of areas where previous cottonwood tree removals occurred. Tools and supplies will be provided, and no experience needed! All ages are welcome! Volunteers who are under 18 and are attending without a parent or guardian, please bring a signed youth waiver with you.

Saturday, February 9th, 9:00 - Noon.  Location:  Idylwood Park.   

For details and to RSVP go HERE.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Microsoft is pledging $500 million for affordable housing in the Seattle area

Image result for microsoft imagesThe following "New York Times" article by Karen Weise on Microsoft's pledge was published on January 16th,2019:

The author summarizes and ends her article with:

“This is where Microsoft is going to be, and the region needs to work,” Ms. Balducci said. “I don’t think this is wholly altruism.”

Claudia Balducci, a member of the King County Council who helps lead the Regional Affordable Housing Task Force.

  -- Bob Yoder

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

PTSA Council Endorses Levy

LWPTSA Council Endorses and Supports LWSD Levy
At the January 2019 general membership meeting, the LWPTSA Council voted to endorse and support the LWSD Capital Projects Levy on the April 23rd ballot.
The LWSD levy addresses immediate capacity needs and district-wide safety measures. If passed, the levy authorizes a six-year levy totaling $120 million or an average of $20 million per year for six years. The levy maintains the current tax rate with no rate increase. 

Levy projects include: 
  • Classroom additions at Lake Washington High School, including auxiliary gyms and commons
  • Classroom additions at Carson Elementary, Franklin Elementary, Rose Hill Elementary, and Twain Elementary, including expansion of core facilities where feasible
  • Critical safety projects, including adding exterior security cameras at elementary schools and entry modifications for security at Eastlake, Redmond and Lake Washington High Schools. (Juanita High School's entry modifications will be added during the current construction project.)

For more information on the LWSD 2019 levy website.

Are you registered to vote? If not sign up here!

The Administration  has informed me the classrooms will be brick and mortar, not portables.  BY