Lynnwood annexation sparks Mill Creek suit

MILL CREEK — The city of Mill Creek has filed a lawsuit in Snohomish County Superior Court that seeks to stop its nearest neighbor from coming any closer.

Lynnwood has proposed annexing 3,690 acres that would expand city limits to the north, the south and the east. About 27,000 people live in the proposed annexation area.

If Lynnwood succeeds, it also would extend east across I-5 near Martha Lake and north across I-405.

Some consider that area as Mill Creek’s unofficial front porch.

The lawsuit would block the entire annexation.

“We believe that is the best ­location for the future gateway into (Mill Creek),” said Tim Burns, Mill Creek’s city manager, of the Martha Lake area.

Lynnwood’s proposal would “create and exacerbate impractical boundaries,” according to the city’s lawsuit.

I-5 isolates the area from Lynnwood’s core, the lawsuit argues, and the new boundary would divide natural neighborhoods.

Not everybody agrees.

In May, the five-­member Snohomish County Boundary Review Board unanimously approved Lynn­wood’s plans.

Mill Creek’s lawsuit alleges that the board’s decision was not supported by substantial evidence. It also states that the board violated the state’s appearance of fairness doctrine. The lawsuit does not say how the board violated the law.

The suit was filed June 30.

A day earlier, the Lynn­wood City Council voted to send its annexation proposal to voters for an election in April 2010.

Lynnwood is hoping the court moves quickly so the election can stay on schedule, Mayor Don Gough said.

That could be difficult because Mill Creek’s lawsuit names 10 defendants, including every person or organization who testified before the board.

In its discussion, board members acknowledged Mill Creek’s contention that the area south of Martha Lake fit best in Mill Creek.

Ultimately, the board decided the connection wasn’t strong enough.

Subdivisions in the area won’t be divided by the new city limits, said John DeWhirst, a board member. Having both sides of I-5 in one city makes negotiations with the Department of Transportation easier, said Lori Kaiser, another board member.

Chris Fyall: 425-339-3447,

Talk to us

More in Local News

Cars move across Edgewater Bridge toward Everett on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2023, in Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Edgewater Bridge redo linking Everett, Mukilteo delayed until mid-2024

The project, now with an estimated cost of $27 million, will detour West Mukilteo Boulevard foot and car traffic for a year.

Lynn Deeken, the Dean of Arts, Learning Resources & Pathways at EvCC, addresses a large gathering during the ribbon cutting ceremony of the new Cascade Learning Center on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023, at Everett Community College in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
New EvCC learning resource center opens to students, public

Planners of the Everett Community College building hope it will encourage students to use on-campus tutoring resources.

Everett Police Chief Dan Templeman announces his retirement after 31 years of service at the Everett City Council meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Everett police chief to retire at the end of October

Chief Dan Templeman announced his retirement at Wednesday’s City Council meeting. He has been chief for nine years.

Boeing employees watch the KC-46 Pegasus delivery event  from the air stairs at Boeing on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019 in Everett, Wa. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Boeing’s iconic Everett factory tour to resume in October

After a three-year hiatus, tours of the Boeing Company’s enormous jet assembly plant are back at Paine Field.

A memorial for a 15-year-old shot and killed last week is set up at a bus stop along Harrison Road on Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Teen boy identified in fatal shooting at Everett bus stop

Bryan Tamayo-Franco, 15, was shot at a Hardeson Road bus stop earlier this month. Police arrested two suspects.

Car crashes into Everett apartment, displacing residents

No one was injured in the crash late Friday, according to Everett police.

Mike Bredstrand, who is trying to get back his job with Lake Stevens Public Works, stands in front of the department’s building on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023, in Lake Stevens, Washington. Bredstrand believes his firing in July was an unwarranted act of revenge by the city. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Lake Stevens worker was fired after getting court order against boss

The city has reportedly spent nearly $60,000 on attorney and arbitration fees related to Mike Bredstrand, who wants his job back.

Chap Grubb, founder and CEO of second-hand outdoor gear store Rerouted, stands inside his new storefront on Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023, in Gold Bar, Washington. Rerouted began as an entirely online shop that connected buyers and sellers of used gear.  (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Used outdoor gear shop Rerouted finds a niche in Gold Bar

Seeking to keep good outdoor gear out of landfills, an online reselling business has put down roots in Gold Bar.

Naval Station Everett. (Chuck Taylor / Herald file)
Everett man sentenced to 6 years for cyberstalking ex-wife

Christopher Crawford, 42, was found guilty of sending intimate photos of his ex-wife to adult websites and to colleagues in the Navy.

Most Read