Hearing examiner says bowling alley must go

  • Tue Aug 14th, 2012 6:39pm

By Katya Yefimova Herald writer

EDMONDS — For more than 50 years, Robin Hood Lanes has been a place to play bowling and make friends.

Now it must make way for a Walgreens and a bank.

The Edmonds hearing examiner on June 28 ruled in favor of the proposed development, ending a months-long battle over the future of the bowling alley.

“Community concern over the loss of this valuable community asset is certainly understandable,” Edmonds hearing examiner Phil Olbrechts wrote in his decision. “However, the due process … (and) state and federal constitutions strictly prohibit the city from denying the permit applications in order to preserve the bowling alley.”

Olbrechts found that the proposed development satisfies all legal requirements and approved the application. Additional permits still are needed before the project can move forward.

No appeals have been filed.

California-based Seven Hills Properties wants to build a 14,490-square-foot Walgreens store and a 3,300-square-foot bank on the property. Company representatives testified at the June hearing that the buildings are designed to be sustainable, energy efficient and visually appealing.

That doesn’t make things any better to the sizable group that opposes the plan.

To do away with the bowling alley would be hurting the children and seniors who bowl for free or get discounts, said Harry Shelton, who has lived in Edmonds since 1960.

“It’s very important for the youth and the seniors,” he said.