Letters to the editor

Dear Editor,

  • Friday, May 30, 2008 12:42pm
  • Opinion

Don’t like growth in Kirkland? Move on.

Dear Editor,

I have been reading all the comments concerning Kirkland’s growth and just had to “Sound Off.”

I moved to the Eastside, long before the Seattle area became the place to be. When I moved here, you could still purchase a home on a fairly large lot for under $90,000. People were still saying “Why do you want to move to Seattle? It does nothing but rain there.” You could drive across the State Route 520 bridge (either way) at 4 p.m. with barely a slow down.

Starting in the mid-1980s, Seattle became “the place to be.” Thanks Bill.

I’ve witnessed every inch of the Seattle area get gobbled up by some sort of development. While all the other townships along the Lake Washington shore grew to bursting, Kirkland remained “quaint.”

Now it’s Kirkland’s turn and like all the other growing townships before it, the residents (including those who moved here in the 1990s) are screaming “too much traffic”, “too much development,” etc.

Well guess what folks, other people want to live and work in Kirkland just like you. It’s called progress. If you don’t like it, perhaps it is time to consider moving back to where ever you came from.

~Judi Liedes, Kirkland.

Renovate Parkplace, but not to 8 stories

Dear Editor,

I don’t think anyone has a problem with improving Parkplace after all these years. It needs renovation, but eight stories? A building that high certainly would alter the character of Peter Kirk Park and the immediate area, to say nothing of the town itself.

A great deal of thought went into the original Kirkland Comprehensive Plan, and it contains plenty of latitude for reasonable expansion. Let’s stay within those parameters and not open the door any wider to commercialism than we already have.

A livable community like ours must be self-sustaining, but it is so much more than a money-making enterprise.

~Greg Harris, Kirkland

Rails would be a poor use of corridor

Dear Editor,

Most of the print and radio coverage and discussion about the “Train vs. Trail” issue I’ve read and heard revolves around what prominent advocates say that CAN be done in abstract with public money, rather than offer serious and balanced analysis of all the options and long-term impact of those decisions, both financially and for the specific communities.

Would it not be wonderful to roll back time and prevent residential construction along most if not the entire shoreline of Lake Washington and Lake Sammamish so that the entire community can enjoy a trail around it as is the case with Green Lake? Should we destroy or under utilize what we currently have? Are there better and cheaper options? Are they part of a well integrated regional, well-connected network?

I walked the train track from State Route 520 to Woodinville, and I’m concerned about a loss of the extraordinary multi-use park/trail potential for a large portion of the Eastside community, especially Houghton, Kirkland Highland and the Redmond-Woodinville segment between N.E. 124th Street and the St. Michel Winery.

The Houghton segment contains a long stretch of breathtaking views of Lake Washington and the Olympic Mountains. Almost the entire community is less than three to four blocks from the track. If it were developed into a safe park, the use of this public asset would be immense. This would become a continuous park connected to other neighborhoods of the city and with easy access by students from the following schools within the three-block perimeter.

~Shawn Etchevers, Kirkland

Affordable housing: city has enough

Dear Editor,

When an affordable housing project comes to your neighborhood, how does it affect the value of your home? Zoning laws were adopted in the late 1910s to protect homes and their property from influences that degraded their neighborhoods.

Unless things have changed, under the Growth Management Act, the county is responsible for providing for affordable housing, not cities. However, housing is usually thought of as being urban, not rural, so most housing is appropriately designated for urban areas that have urban services. But the county does not control cities. So with an existing heavily subsidized mass transit system, affordable housing could be placed anywhere buses could travel. Workers could use buses to get to work. They do not have to live in cities. Hunts Point, Beaux Arts, Yarrow Point, and Medina don’t have and don’t need affordable housing.

It’s important that cities balance their housing resources. Kirkland has about 25 percent of its housing stock in affordable housing. That’s more than enough.

If the land values grow to such a point whereby affordable housing is not feasible, so be it. Affordable housing does not need to be provided everywhere. We have all worked hard to provide the best for our families. Let’s keep it that way.

~Robert L. Style, Kirkland


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