March 23, 2022 Meeting Summary
-- see also the February 23, 2022 meeting summary
JOIN OUR EMAIL LIST
and get notifications of meetings and news:
Introductions – Norah Robinson, King County Parks; Greg Helland, SODA representative, FOMP President; Michael Hobbs, FOMP Secretary, webmaster; Glenn Eades, Eastside Audubon; Shai Hinitz, MAR/C representative; Laura Hall, FOMP Secretary, Marymoor Community Gardens Association; Keri DeWoody, Seattle Event Solutions (Clise Mansion management, and beer/cider sales at concerts)
TOPs Tennis Facility – Possible new proposal
There are restrictions on construction in the area they originally proposed (NW corner of Marymoor Park). TOPs would not be able to move into that space unless there is no other place they could be located. This is based on a map of “Shoreline Conservancy Areas”; this mapping is new, and is more restrictive than past assessments. TOPs is now looking for any other place in the park for their facility. For instance, they are asking whether the Velodrome will continue to exist at its present location. [The velodrome is at the end of it’s working life. It’s cracking, sinking, and is larger than current standards for competitive velodromes.]
Laura strongly objects to the concept of a large building being constructed in the open space of Marymoor Park. Period. This should not proceed at the park. Michael suggested that if the velodrome wants a covered track, and TOPs wants a large tennis building, that King County should buy some large empty retail space (such as the closed Kohl’s at the start of Avondale Rd.) and construct a large sports building facility.
- Professional Dog Walker permit allocation
Since 2011, professional dog walking services have needed to get a permit if they wish to bring dogs to Marymoor. Originally 18 permits were issued. KC Parks, due to the cost of permitting management, put a moratorium on new permit applications in 2014 (when there were 13 permitted services). There are now just seven permitted dog walking services, and there are other services that would like permits. So KC Parks has put out surveys to both dog area users and to dog walking services to try and figure out how to proceed. Dog Area usage has generally increased over the years, and maintenance issues are growing. SODA is involved in the
process to decide how to proceed here. Permits include rules of conduct that cover behavior of dogs, and permit-holder behavior towards other dog walkers. Survey results from existing Dog Area users (individuals) are mostly favorable with regard to dog walking services. KC Parks is also trying to make sure that the distribution of permits is fair and open. Norah expects that, by June, Parks will have a new system for 2023. Currently, service companies can direct their fees to SODA, and also can offset the fees using volunteer hours instead of money. The maximum permit fee is ~$800 per year. Dog walking services can only bring dogs Monday-Friday during the day.
- Proposed Professional Cricket Field
Major League Cricket has approached Bellevue, Redmond, and King County to build a professional cricket field somewhere on the Eastside. Marymoor has been proposed as their favored choice. This facility would be professional quality and would host international matches, with thousands of spectators. These jurisdictions have shown support for a professional field, somewhere in the area. A minor league cricket team that is part of Minor League Cricket (same parent organization) already plays at the existing cricket field west of the Event Pad at Marymoor. Major League Cricket is in the process of creating a 6+ team major league, and Seattle/Eastside is a top market for them.
If built at Marymoor, the field might replace the City of Bellevue ball fields in the northeast part of the park.
Greg talked with Courtney (Norah’s boss) and with a representative from KC Council. Greg was told that KC Council has directed that the idea should be investigated for feasibility ASAP.
Shai raised the issue of the difference between recreational use and professional use. Is it appropriate for professional events bring in lots of $$$ using public land? He also is concerned that the scale of these professional events would be MUCH too big for Marymoor to handle. Greg wants an assessment as to whether cricket is more “important” over the next 30 years than softball? Greg also raised the issue that recreational cricket is one thing, but that professional cricket is another. The current use of the softball fields is recreational use within the community. Is is appropriate to replace recreational use with very restrictive professional use?
Bellevue may want to move forward with this (the ballfields are on City of Bellevue property that is within the general bounds of Marymoor Park), but the traffic and parking would be in King County’s Marymoor Park. The largest events would be 5,000-10,000 spectators.
Laura stressed a concern that it was very inappropriate that the story broke in the press before FOMP had even a hint of this concept. The timeline might be as quick as a 2024 opening, but we all felt that was wildly optimistic. Michael would be happier with natural turf than with artificial turf. Laura stressed that while Marymoor has many advantages as a target location, but many locations exist which could work. She stressed that other locations might be better for supporting local economies.
- CIP/Projects/Facilities Updates
- Eastside Audubon BirdLoop – Continues with their monthly work parties.
- Marymoor Community Gardens Association – All plots are rented out. There is a long waiting list. Planting will not be happening for another month (at least) for the most part.
- MAR/C Model Airplane Field – MAR/C had a very successful swap meet, with buyers and sellers coming from all over. Their request for a new shelter has wide support from their members (including financial support). They are working with KC Parks on getting this approved.
- Serve Our Dog Area (SODA) – SODA has installed the seasonal fencing around the heronry. They have also closed off several areas of the Dog Meadow to allow those areas to regrow. They do this every year, with different areas closed off for recovery.
- Maintenance – Equipment cover in yard is still on hold awaiting resolution of the concrete driver strike. Polo Cantu has been promoted to North Utility Trail Crew. New events/maintenance lead is Samantha Dykes.
- Sound Transit – Works in progress: Wetland mitigation, Tree mitigation, Gateway, Surface Water improvement, 30% design w-rain garden, design in process
- New fencing on Ballfield #1 – June-July construction. Field will be closed during construction.
- Masterplan Update – No new news.
- Marymoor West and Boathouse – Greg again raised the issue of timers on the parking lot lighting to prevent nightime light pollution. Norah said that the situation is being investigated.
- Lake Hills/Sammamish Sewer Upgrade Project – Delayed until at least 2024. Crews are continuing field work to inform the project final design. Crews will survey along the sewer pipe route for potential locations to replant trees and to confirm locations of wetlands. This work is anticipated to last until April 1. See updates at: https://kingcounty.gov/depts/dnrp/wtd/capital-projects/active/lake-hills-nw-lake-sammamish.aspx
- Event Updates
- Norah gave us a heads-up that there might be a new BigTop show for the Winter 2023. This would be larger than Teatro Zinzani but smaller than Cirque Du Soleil. This would be an adult-only show (21+). This would have around 600 people capacity (maybe 200-250 cars), so it would require much less staff than Cirque.
- The concert calendar is quite busy.
- Michael has posted an initial 2022 Events calendar on the FOMP website at www.marymoor.org/events.htm
Next meeting Wednesday, April 27th, 2022
TBD is whether this will again be a remote meeting, or in-person at Marymoor
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 email@example.com, and he will endeavor to correct them.