Board Overview: Changing the Eastern Main Land Use Code
In addition, the success of the neighborhood walks, the latest development activity and the name of the environmental education center discussed
On Monday, city council considered the first in a series of topics – building heights and housing – related to the land use code amendment (LUCA) for the east main station area.
The discussion focused on building heights, a minimum housing requirement, and affordable housing incentives for the East Main Station area, with key considerations for the city’s substantial jobs, the housing imbalance and the shortage of affordable housing. The council looked at three different options for different heights, minimum residential requirements, and affordable housing incentives. Part of the city’s strategy in this area is to potentially allow higher building heights in exchange for housing and especially affordable housing. The board is expected to continue discussing these and other topics related to East Main LUCA on November 1.
Additional study sessions for each topic will take place from October to December, and final council action is scheduled for December. The full council discussion of this week’s topics is available on the Bellevue Television replay.
Success of neighborhood walks
Also this week, council members received a review of this summer’s Neighborhood Walks which took place in person in Northeast Bellevue, Somerset and West Bellevue, as well as online via a virtual neighborhood walk across the country. the city.
The walks, which attract more than a hundred residents this year, are designed to provide an informal place of interaction between city leaders and the public where residents can share what is important in their neighborhood. The main areas of focus this year during the marches included public safety and policing, neighborhood character and connections, homelessness and social services, transportation planning, growth and the environment. .
The Bellevue Neighborhood Walk series began in 2017. The full presentation and more details on the program can be found in the meeting documents.
Latest development activity
The council received an update on development activities in the city during the first half of 2021, including an overview of projects under construction or at various stages of the development process, and an overview of new projects planned over the next few years. Next 12-18 months.
Development activity at Bellevue continues at a high level with a strong interest in new residential and commercial projects. Permitting activity saw a decline last year due to COVID-related construction stoppages, but has recovered quickly since.
Despite the challenges posed by the high number of requests and the need to quickly adjust municipal services due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Development Services continues to demonstrate its commitment to continuous improvement with several process and technology improvements. . Staff shared highlights of last year’s accomplishments, ongoing improvements and major initiatives planned for the coming year, including a permit tracking system, increased use of the virtual permit center, providing online access to building codes with national and local changes, improvements to the Weekly Permit Bulletin and improved public access to permit data.
The full presentation is available for video replay via Bellevue Television.
Name of the environmental education center
In other cases, the board discussed a proposal by board member Conrad Lee to rename the Mercer Slough Environmental Education Center to the Jim Ellis Environmental Education Center in Mercer Slough.
Board members discussed Mr. Ellis’ contributions to Bellevue and the region through numerous environmental efforts, including restoring the health of local waterways from Lake Washington to Mercer Slough, as a key driver of creation. from the Slough Education Center and as Founding Chair of the Mountains at Sound Greenway Trust, among many other community work.
Council members voted unanimously to send the proposal to the Parks Council, which has specific criteria and a defined process for nominating a city park or facility. Details of the proposal are in the meeting documents.