Friends of Marymoor Park

March 23, 2016 Meeting Summary

-- see also the February 24, 2016  meeting summary

1) Introductions – Norah Robinson, King County Parks; Greg Helland, S.O.D.A, FOMP President; Michael Hobbs, Eastside Audubon, FOMP Secretary; Laura Hall, Marymoor Community Gardener's Association, FOMP Board; T.J. Davis, King County Parks - Public/Private partnerships;  Travis Roach and Marceil Whitney, Eastside Tennis Center, Tennis Outreach Programs;  Johan Luchsinger and Lisa Lu, Baylis Architects; Glenn & Bertha Eades, neighbors, Shane from AEG Live

2)  Tennis Facility Proposal

King County Parks has recognized a need for improved support of tennis in the county.  They would like to serve this need by using a public/private partnership.  After being approached by the Tennis Outreach Programs, a proposal is being developed for an indoor tennis facility that could be built in the northwest corner of Marymoor.

Tennis Outreach Programs – TOPS – have engaged Baylis Architects to work on plans. TOPS is a non-profit aimed at introducing low income youth and youth at risk, age 3 through high school.

TOPS runs the Eastside Tennis Center. Much of the programming there is fee-based, but they are a non-profit and provide scholarships for ~300 low income kids per year. Paid programming plus fundraising runs the facility.  They are running into capacity challenges at the Eastside Tennis Center where they work now.  Winter months are busiest, but they offer camps in the summer. Times at ETC run 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

They would like to build a year-round indoor tennis center open to the public. It would be a 60,000 sq. ft. building and around a 30,000-40,000 sq. ft. parking area (aiming at 80-90 parking spaces, which is a little more than they need). There would be seven standard courts and four smaller youth courts (pickle-ball court sized), plus offices, locker rooms, class rooms, viewing galleries, etc. in the center. At its highest, it would be nearly 40 feet tall (nearly four stories).

They would like the Marymoor site because of the fantastic location, with close proximity to low income kids in several areas including Crossroads. Currently serving families at Redmond Community Center.

They consideredfour sites within Marymoor. Wetland and parking considerations pretty much precludes building the indoor courts where the outdoor courts are currently. ETC/TOPS are looking at the extreme NW corner of Marymoor.

TOPS would likely have their offices in the building; it would be a similar relationship to that with the Sammamish Rowing Association. These projects typically use a 30-40 year lease of the site to the organization, with right to renew.

TOPS would like to also include the outdoor courts as part of the facility. Parks would be happy to shift programming and some of the maintenance of the outdoor courts to TOPS. Currently there is limited programming (i.e. scheduled classes) in spring and summer, and the rest of the time the courts are available for drop-in use. Michael strongly requested that significant drop-in access be preserved for the outdoor courts.

TJ indicated that, programmatically, it’s a good fit with the park.

There are major technical questions involving water availability, wetlands, cultural resources, water table, etc.   Any of these could derail the project.  Redmond has put a cap on the quantity of water they are willing to sell to Marymoor, and restrooms and showers could overtax that limit.  The NW corner of the park 

Glenn, and then Greg, asked the question of why a building should be placed within Marymoor; a building could be placed in any area zoned for a warehouse-type building. Placing it in a park, on open park land, seems to destroy open land for a facility that does not have any affinity to open park land. Glenn also asked about whether Marymoor is located close to the need.

TJ Stated  there is no other King County land that is suitable.   Michael averred that Marymoor is rapidly getting full, with little land remaining, traffic capacity, water capacity, etc.  Can’t Parks acquire some land to make a Regional Athletic Zone?

Bertha asked about hours, traffic, supervision, etc. TOPS does have a van that can carry 7 kids, but mostly parents bring kids and either stay to watch, or drop them off and come back to pick them up.

There is room for light rail on the north side of the building.

Norah would also like an outdoor basket ball court. She’d been thinking about overlaying basketball on the outdoor tennis courts. This project could make support of basketball at Marymoor more difficult.

3) CIP/Project/Facilities Updates:

a) Birdloop – Eastside Audubon has approached Parks and others for a wetland habitat improvement / ponds to the southeast, as well as extension of the boardwalk along the slough from the Dog Area to the existing boardwalk, and one or more river access walkways and platforms. Norah would like, first, to get a full plan, and then move forward in phases. In the meanwhile, Norah has suggested removing the the fractured pavement between the East Footbridge and the east end of the boardwalk, and replacing it with crushed gravel.

b) Community Gardens – Irrigation and path project underway

c) Marymoor West and Boathouse Project – The boathouse is essentially complete now.  The construction office trailer will be removed soon.

d) Concert Venue Seating – The paved path from the main venue entrance to the priority seating area, to accommodate ADA visitors, will be completed before this year's concert season.  Norah was hoping to put off the concrete pad that will replace the plastic pads on the priority seating area, but AEG would like this to go forward ASAP.  They have safety concerns, as well as capacity concerns.

e)  Park Drainage – Focusing on Lot K (serving the FieldTurf soccer fields), which has experienced flooding issues.

Next Meeting: April 27, 2016, 7:00 p.m. at the Art Barn

These notes do not constitute an official record of the meeting.  They may have inaccuracies and omissions.  If anyone has any complaints about the content of these notes, they should direct them to Michael Hobbs at, and he will endeavor to correct them.


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