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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Challenge to Light-Rail Planning Kneecapped by City

Posted by on Tue, Mar 30, 2010 at 11:54 AM

A city hearing examiner has tossed out 11 of 13 complaints filed by a woman attempting to delay planning for increased density around the Beacon Hill light-rail station. As I've reported recently, the appeal was part of a coordinated multi-neighborhood effort to halt station-area planning in Southeast Seattle—for the sort of density that is part and parcel with building transit systems—because the appellants claimed the city had erred in numerous different ways. By filing the appeal in North Beacon Hill, the neighborhood activists hobbled plans by El Centro de la Raza, a social justice community center, to build low-income housing and a central plaza for the neighborhood because the city cannot restart the process until next year.

However, many of the complaints didn't hold water. A city hearing examiner recently dismissed one of the appeals for Mount Baker planning. And yesterday, the hearing examiner dismissed all but two issues raised for the North Beacon Hill appeal, stating, "the remaining issues in this appeal are all broad, conclusory allegations unsupported by any stated facts."

 

Comments (12) RSS

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Paul Pearson 1
What was "Issue 6," just out of curiosity?
Posted by Paul Pearson on March 30, 2010 at 12:10 PM · Report this
Cienna Madrid 2
Issue 6 stated that the Department of Planning Development failed to "meaningfully consider" the impacts of future development (i.e. increased density). This was challenged as being too broad and vague, so the appellant had to revise Issue 6 to address the impacts of increased development on social services.
Posted by Cienna Madrid on March 30, 2010 at 12:25 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 3
you do know the front page of the Seattle Times is all about the controversy over the UW Husky Stadium light rail station today, don't you?

(sits amazed at the Hill-centric obsessions of the Stranger)
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 30, 2010 at 12:38 PM · Report this
Dominic Holden 4
@3) Will, if by "the Hill" you mean "Beacon Hill" and "Mount Baker" then yes, we're obsessed.
Posted by Dominic Holden on March 30, 2010 at 12:45 PM · Report this
5
EH, the UW story is much much bigger Dom. and it will affect CH a lot more than future BH LINK station development. Quit grasping for the easy follow up--the station is there, now on to more relevant stories. PS-your old picture was better than your new picture.
Posted by Paul's gfriend on March 30, 2010 at 1:29 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 6
not criticizing, just they have hundreds of comments on that story, so I'm surprised there's nothing on it on SLOG ... especially since it's the next station from your offices.
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 30, 2010 at 3:44 PM · Report this
litlnemo 7
This is relevant to other neighborhoods because of the possibility it will happen there when transit-oriented rezoning comes along. Since Capitol Hill is getting a station, what happens in SE Seattle now could be repeated on Cap Hill soon enough.
Posted by litlnemo http://slumberland.org/ on March 31, 2010 at 4:13 AM · Report this
litlnemo 8
This is relevant to other neighborhoods because of the possibility it will happen there when transit-oriented rezoning comes along. Since Capitol Hill is getting a station, what happens in SE Seattle now could be repeated on Cap Hill soon enough.
Posted by litlnemo http://slumberland.org/ on March 31, 2010 at 4:16 AM · Report this
9
I appreciate Cienna following up with news about a variety of neighborhoods. The people behind the most recent SE Seattle anti-density appeals are linked with folks who've protested development on Capitol Hill--most notably Dennis Saxman. Since the development process is the same city wide, it's important to understand the tools people opposed to development are using and the ways it's possible to fight them. (Alternately, if you agree that development is bad, all nonprofits are somehow in cahoots with developers and the city...then it's good to know how to throw a wrench in the works.)
Posted by MJ on March 31, 2010 at 6:18 PM · Report this
litlnemo 10
Now, what I'm wondering about is the way that an appeal like this -- even though the Beacon Hill one has mostly (but not entirely) been thrown out, and the North Rainier one was completely thrown out -- can derail a neighborhood plan update. Since the update can only be made once a year, any appeal, whether upheld or not, seems to be able to prevent the update from being made for an entire year. Can individuals just continually file appeals year after year to postpone a plan update indefinitely?
Posted by litlnemo http://slumberland.org/ on March 31, 2010 at 10:33 PM · Report this
11
Well, it’s amazing. The miracle has been done. Hat’s off. Well done, as we know that “hard work always pays off”, after a long struggle with sincere effort it’s done.
-----------------------------
johnyrock17
Travel Planning
Posted by johnyrock17 on June 19, 2010 at 1:14 PM · Report this
12
How about if the City worked better with the neighborhoods and got more participation in and acceptance of their plans?
Posted by TobyinFremont on September 11, 2010 at 11:22 PM · Report this

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