Stanwood scopes out safer places for City Hall

STANWOOD — Leaders are looking to study possible locations for a new city campus that would move City Hall and the police department out of the downtown floodplain.

Officials hope to have a preliminary cost estimate, site layout and work schedule by early April. They started seeking proposals from architectural firms in December to plan those details.

However, the architects first must determine whether the city’s top two locations would be suitable for the campus, which would include both the City Hall and police department, city administrator Deborah Knight said. A feasibility study will look at factors like size, access and environmental concerns.

City leaders are most interested in an undeveloped piece of property at 26820 Pioneer Highway, off Highway 532 near the Stanwood-Camano School District office and Stanwood Fire Station. The city’s second choice is in the same area, between the fire station and the Haggen shopping complex.

“Before we go and buy something, it’s really important to do our due diligence,” Knight said.

The City Council won’t decide on purchasing either property until the study is done, she said. It’s likely to take at least six months.

The council set aside $500,000 in Stanwood’s 2015-16 budget to find and evaluate a new City Hall site.

Stanwood City Hall is located in a floodplain and cannot be fully renovated without floodproofing the building, which would require elevating the structure about 8 feet. If state grant money comes through, the budget includes $750,000 to elevate and renovate the existing building rather than move. However, the city has not yet heard back about the grant, Knight said.

The cost of the relocation study won’t be finalized until the council awards a contract. The group is scheduled to do so by Jan. 22, but could end the project at any time if another option — such as elevating City Hall — moves forward instead, according to council documents.

While officials look into a new city campus, a $164,000 remodel of the Stanwood Police Department continues on schedule. The department is closed during construction and should reopen in March, Knight said.

The police station is about a mile away from City Hall and also falls within Stanwood’s expansive floodplain.

Putting police and city offices on the same property could be good for customer service, access and security, according to council documents. Designers would gather ideas from police, city staff and the public before doing any detailed sketches of the buildings.

“It’s at the design stage that you really want public input,” Knight said. “That might not happen until next year.”

The deadline for architectural firms to submit a proposal to the city is Jan. 9, and the study is scheduled to start in February.

Kari Bray: 425-339-3439;

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

A Cessna 150 crashed north of Paine Field on Friday evening, Feb. 16, 2024, in Mukilteo, Washington. The pilot survived without serious injury. (Courtesy of Richard Newman.)
‘I’m stuck in the trees’: 911 call recounts plane crash near Paine Field

Asad Ali was coming in for a landing in a Cessna 150 when he crashed into woods south of Mukilteo. Then he called 911 — for 48 minutes.

Snohomish County likely to feel more like winter, beginning Monday

Get ready for a mix of rain and snow this week, along with cooler temperatures.

Anthony Boggess
Arlington man sentenced for killing roommate who offered shelter

Anthony Boggess, 33, reported hearing the voices of “demons” the night he strangled James Thrower, 65.

Patrick Kunz speaks during his sentencing on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024, at Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, Washington.(Annie Barker / The Herald)
Everett gymnastics coach who spied on students sentenced to 6 months

Patrick Kunz, 47, pleaded guilty to charges of voyuerism and possession of child pornography last month.

Traffic moves along Highway 526 in front of Boeing’s Everett Production Facility on Nov. 28, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / Sound Publishing)
Everett transgender mechanic alleges Boeing treated her ‘like a zoo animal’

For years, Boeing allowed toxicity “to fester and grow” at its Everett factory, according to Rachel Rasmussen, an employee from 1989 to 2024.

Monroe High School (Monroe School District)
Monroe High School teacher accused of sexual misconduct, put on leave

Few details were not available Thursday afternoon. Police were seeking information from the public.

After 10 months, police make arrest in fatal Everett shooting

Police believe Malik “Capone” Fulson killed Joseph Haderlie, 27, in April 2023 outside an apartment complex on Casino Road.

Kathy Purviance-Snow poses for a photo in her computer lab at Snohomish High School on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Snohomish, WA. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
To ban or embrace ChatGPT? Local teachers fight AI with AI — or don’t

“It has fundamentally changed my teaching in really stressful and exciting ways,” an EvCC teacher said. At all levels of education, ChatGPT poses a tricky question.

Ryan Rafter appears in court for sentencing Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024, at Snohomish County Superior Court in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Man sentenced to life in prison for murder of Everett father

In April 2022, Ryan Rafter, 42, shot Christopher Buck, 29, to death after breaking in to his home to steal drugs.

Driver strikes, kills Marysville man who was crossing I-5 in Seattle

The man’s car had broken down near Mercer Street. Troopers reported that he was struck when he tried to cross the freeway.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Darrington in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Police: Darrington woman stabbed, buried 5-year-old daughter

The woman reportedly told investigators she was hearing voices before she killed her young daughter on Valentine’s Day.

In this Feb. 5, 2018, file photo a Boeing 737 MAX 7 is displayed during a debut for employees and media of the new jet in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)
FAA gives Boeing 90 days to develop plan to fix quality, safety issues

The agency’s ultimatum comes a day after a meeting with CEO Dave Calhoun and other top Boeing officials in Washington, D.C.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.