By Evan Smith
A newly formed organization will join others in fighting the proposed condominium project, which would be built on an abandoned industrial site at Point Wells on the shore of Puget Sound in unincorporated southwest Snohomish County. The only access to the project is on a two-lane road in the Richmond Beach area of Shoreline in King County.
The new organization is called “Richmond Beach Advocates,” formed with seed money from the Richmond Beach Community Association, a century-old neighborhood organization in Shoreline whose charter doesn’t allow political advocacy.
Richmond Beach Advocates will join the Town of Woodway and a residents’ group called “Save Richmond Beach” in opposing the project.
Woodway residents are concerned about having their views blocked by the buildings while Richmond Beach residents are concerned about traffic impacts from the project. Snohomish County would get tax money from the project.
The Town of Woodway and Save Richmond Beach are waiting for a State Supreme Court ruling on an appeal of a lower-court ruling that the project could proceed under a zoning designation that the State Growth Management Hearings Board has declared illegal. The Town and Save Richmond Beach have appealed a State court of appeals ruling that the project could proceed under rules in effect in the County when the developer applied for its permit.
The project is in Woodway’s urban growth area, but Snohomish County has already approved the project in the unincorporated area.
Richmond Beach Advocates will be able to raise money with the Community Association matching up to $10,000 and to hire attorneys, engineers and other professionals to develop comments for an environmental impact statement with the County.
Richmond Beach Community Association board members said at a meeting in early February that the City of Shoreline has not spoken for its area. For example, Shoreline has not participated with Woodway in the appeal to the Supreme Court but, instead, has chosen to negotiate with Snohomish County over potential impacts on Shoreline.