In 20 years, the neighborhoods near the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center could look radically different. (Lizz Giordano / The Herald)

In 20 years, the neighborhoods near the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center could look radically different. (Lizz Giordano / The Herald)

Mountlake Terrace envisions a dense, walkable Town Center

Buildings as tall as 12 stories are now allowed near the future Sound Transit light rail station.

Mountlake Terrace is the latest city designing a denser, walkable neighborhood near the future light rail station.

The new plan allows for buildings as tall as 12-stories in an area that today is mostly single-family homes with a few apartment buildings and strip malls mixed-in. The City Council approved the changes in September with the passage of the Town Center Subarea Plan.

“The train is coming,” said Stephen Clifton, Mountlake Terrace’s assistant city manager, “that’s the primary impetus to all the things we are doing.”

Mountlake Terrace’s Town Center encompasses about 82 acres including Veterans Park and the civic campus that contains a library, fire and police stations, along with the new city hall.

The plan designated three new zones plus a transitional area radiating out from the future Mountlake Terrace Light Rail Station set to open in 2024. The land closest to the transit center allows the tallest buildings — between six and 12 stories. Here the city wants developers to build mainly office space, with restaurant and small-scale retail intermixed.

On land surrounding the Civic Campus, building heights step down to four to eight floors. That area is zoned for mixed-use buildings — dining and retail on the ground floor with apartments on top.

At the north and east edges of the Town Center, approaching single-family neighborhoods, new construction will be limited to four to six stories and will be mostly residential.

To make the area more friendly to pedestrians, the city is completing the grid system adding streets to divide long blocks and adding a public plaza to the civic campus and transit center.

The city estimates the upzoning could accommodate on the high end 8,400 new units and add 1.1 million square-feet of commercial space. The Town Center, where the city wants to focus growth, can easily handle the 2040 population targets for the city, according to the plan.

Residents are already getting a peak into this taller, denser future, as Terrace Station takes shape just south of the transit center. Once finished, its three mixed-use buildings will line I-5 and add about 600 units of housing and 90,000 square-feet of commercial space to the city. The first phase, which includes 258 apartments, is expected to open in 2020.

“It was very specially developed with the thought that these residential units would be adjacent to light rail,” said Christy Osborn, director of community and economic development.

And inside the Town Center area, Atlas 236 is also coming in 2020, adding about 150 apartments plus commercial space.

As the arrival of light rail grows closer, the city expects development in the Town Center to pick up. Though, just when that first 12-story tower will break ground is hard to predict.

Got a question? Email me at streetsmarts@heraldnet.com or call 425-374-4165. Please include your name and city of residence.

Talk to us

More in Local News

25 years later, they still hope to find their daughter’s body

For her parents, detectives and prosecutors, it’s less a whodunit than a question: Where’s Tracey Brazzel?

Homeowner allegedly shoots, kills burglar in Everett

The homeowner, in his 70s, reportedly heard noise and confronted a burglar, in his 30s.

Boeing cutting more than 12,000 jobs with layoffs, buyouts

The company said it will lay off 6,770 workers this week, and another 5,520 are taking buyouts.

Everett man identified as victim of deadly gunfire at party

William Thomas Harper III, 28, was shot to death Sunday. His alleged assailant is jailed.

2 more sentenced in killing of Everett homeless man

Three people were involved in a robbery during which Michael Boone was tied to a tree and left to freeze.

Registration open for drive-thru virus testing in Snohomish

Tests will be administered Thursday at the Sno-Isle Libraries branch on Maple Avenue.

Worst jobless rate in the state: Snohomish County at 20.2%

In April, 91,383 were unemployed in the county. The aerospace sector was hit especially hard.

Burglary suspect identified after fatal Everett break-in

A homeowner shot the man Thursday morning. The slain man had served much of his adulthood in prison.

After 3 weeks in hospital, Marysville man dies from gunshot

Joshua M. Klick, 31, was shot during a reported burglary in Arlington, according to police.

Most Read