Hillside homes in Mukilteo are seen from the ferry line on Oct. 20. (Andrea Brown / The Herald)

Hillside homes in Mukilteo are seen from the ferry line on Oct. 20. (Andrea Brown / Herald file)

83% of Mukilteo voters don’t want ‘high-density’ housing

A ballot measure’s results won’t immediately change anything, but Mayor-elect Joe Marine sees it as a mandate.

MUKILTEO — The results of Tuesday’s election confirmed what many residents have said for nearly two years.

Overwhelmingly, they don’t want more “high-density” housing in Mukilteo.

“It sends a message to the City Council, the mayor and staff,” Mukilteo Mayor-elect Joe Marine said. “It’s not a direction the citizens want the city to encourage or pursue.”

The Mukilteo City Council placed the advisory measure on the ballot to ask voters: :Do you think the City should encourage more high density housing to be built in Mukilteo?” More than 82% said no.

Marine proposed the advisory measure in June as a Mukilteo City Council member. The proposal came after a contentious, year-long discussion over a housing action plan and density in Mukilteo.

There isn’t a universal definition of high-density housing, which opponents worried might confuse voters. The citizens who drafted statements for the voters’ pamphlet — both for and against — provided varying definitions.

“I think the citizens that voted probably have the same view I do,” Marine said, noting he doesn’t support any zoning changes in Mukilteo. “I don’t think anybody is confused.”

Nearly half the city’s registered voters cast a ballot as of Friday. More than 6,200 voters said no to the density questions. More than 1,300 said yes.

Mukilteo City Council President Sarah Kneller, who did not seek re-election, did not respond to request for comment Friday afternoon.

Mukilteo’s next major housing discussion will most likely take place sometime in 2022. The city is required to update its comprehensive plan by 2024 and will start asking for community input next year, City Administrator Steve Powers said last month.

Katie Hayes: katie.hayes@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @misskatiehayes.

Katie Hayes is a Report for America corps member and writes about issues that affect the working class for The Daily Herald. Readers can support this work through a tax-deductible contribution to The Daily Herald’s Report for America fund.

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