I wanted to say that I am proud to be a member of such a thoughtful, articulate and concerned community, as demonstrated by the attendance of last week’s Planning Commission meeting. Even though there were in attendance citizens and local business owners whose opinions may not have been in concert with mine, it was very apparent that there are a number of citizens who have great passion for our city.
Imagine my shock, however, to hear for the first time at (the June 12) meeting that the Planning Commission appears to have made a counter proposal to Touchstone. In exchange for building height around the park and a portion of 85th Street, they may be willing to allow 11-story buildings. I am dumbfounded by this and even now cannot find the words to express my disbelief and sadness. It appears that our city officials have so lost sight of our community in exchange for dollars.
Touchstone’s private amendment request is not going to resolve the financial problems of the city. Nor will it resolve the financial stresses of the existing retail business in the core area. Besides a downturn in our economy, what is hurting retail in our core area is lack of parking and traffic gridlock.
One of the variances sought by Touchstone is a reduction in the required parking stalls, so how exactly is that going to be an improvement to the situation?
I strongly urge our citizens to contact our city officials, not only in regards to the Kirkland Parkplace project, but to voice their opinion regarding the direction of our future as a city.
~Brenda Klos, Kirkland