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MEDIA CONTACT:  
Catherine Soper
Public Affairs Manager
425.388.0680
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Port staff recommends Alternative 1 for North Marina

Post Date:06/02/2005

After more than two years of in-depth analysis, the Port of Everett staff has concluded Alternative 1 will be the best fit for the redevelopment of the North Marina, and plan to take this recommendation to the Port Commission on June 7.

Alternative 1 concentrates the residential development in the center of the 65-acre site and the office space near 13th Street and West Marine View Drive. The Craftsmen District would be built along West Marine View Drive, inns and restaurants would be positioned along the waterfront and open spaces and public access would be interwoven throughout the development.

"While all three development alternatives would help carry out the Port's mission to 'broaden and strengthen the economic base of the Port District,' we believe Alternative 1 will provide greater employment opportunities as well as a more efficient transportation network for the community," said John Mohr, executive director of the Port of Everett.

Alternative 1 is also consistent with the Port Commissioners' guiding principals for the North Marina Redevelopment:

  • The project must be buildable
  • The project must be based on sound economic information
  • The waterfront should be used as a year-round community asset
  • The project should enhance maritime functions
  • The entire process must have extensive involvement from the community and its
    stakeholders.

Keeping within these guidelines, Port staff modified Alternative 1 to include a perimeter loop road system and walkable blocks to help move pedestrians more comfortably and vehicles more efficiently. These modifications were in response to the significant number of citizen comments the Port received during the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) scoping process regarding traffic flow.

Everett Maritime LLC also endorses this development alternative.

"This alternative's configuration allows for walkable blocks that connect the center of the site to the esplanade and maximizes the amount of public access and open space throughout the site," said Ken Olsen, director of land development for Everett Maritime. "These were features the community said loud and clear that they wanted on their waterfront."

It's because of these objectives, however, that the Port staff is going to recommend the Port Commission delay's action on Alternative 4, which would retain the Collins Building.

"Based upon the analysis that was performed, the Collins Building would not be successful from a financial standpoint," Mohr said. "But we are currently working on an agreement that could allow a qualified nonprofit organization to move and restore the Collins Building. Our staff will ask the Commissioners to delay the Alternative 4 decision while discussions continue."

All the alternatives will require an adjustment to the city and port's development agreement. Alternative 1, which calls for extensive underground parking, will require a change in the height limitation in order to minimize the parking footprint on the surface of the site. Most height adjustments would be between two and five feet, but a 15-foot height increase is needed for the central 10 acres of the 65-acre site.

"The public consensus was they didn't want to have a sea of parking on prime-waterfront property," Olsen said. "This alternative allows us to reduce the visibility of the parking garages, and still keep it accessible to the public."

Before the development agreement could be modified, it would need to go through the city of Everett's Planning Commission and the Everett City Council for approval.

Port staff has scheduled a special public meeting from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on June 2 at the Marine View Conference Center to present the staff's recommendation and take public testimony. The official public hearing for the development alternative is 9 a.m. on June 7 at the Marine View Conference Center.

Public comment on the preferred development alternative will be taken through June 9, but no public testimony will be taken on June 14 when the commissioners are expected to choose the development alternative. The issuance of the Final EIS on May 27 gives the Port Commissioners the green light to choose the preferred alternative and proceed to the next step in the redevelopment.

For more information on the staff's recommendation, please contact Lisa Mandt, community relations representative, at 425-388-0617 or by e-mail.

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