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Mayor's Board Room
Tuesday, August 09, 2011, 11:00 PM
Book: 65, Page: 1

Special Meeting

Called To Order The meeting was called to order by Committee Chair, Terry Bornemann

Roll Call
    Jack Weiss, Council Member, First Ward
    Gene Knutson, Council Member, Second Ward
    Barry Buchanan, Council Member, Third Ward
    Stan Snapp, Council Member, Fourth Ward
    Terry Bornemann, Council Member, Fifth Ward
    Michael Lilliquist, Council Member, Sixth Ward
    Seth Fleetwood, Council Member, At Large



Waterfront Development Committee
MEMBERS: Terry Bornemann, Chair; Michael Lilliquist; Jack Weiss; Gene Knutson

AB19293 1. Waterfront Redevelopment Update

a) Overview of Documents

    Linda Stewart reviewed the Draft Sub-Area Plan; Transportation Improvement Projects 2012-2017 [TIP] related to waterfront projects; Table of Offsite Mitigation Requirements & Estimated Costs for Waterfront, Marine Trades Area, Downtown Waterfront, Log Pond, Shipping Terminal and Cornwall Beach Area; and Project phasing sequence.
b) Points of Agreement

    Ms. Stewart reported on the agreements reached between the Port and the City. There will be a consistency review process for projects coming forward after the Planned Action Ordinance [PAO] is adopted. Agreement has been reached on SEPA authority for projects deemed not compliant or outside the PAO. The City will be the lead in the mixed use areas and the Port will be the lead on the industrial and marine trades areas. SEPA authority will be shared for areas where these uses are blended.

    The terms of the agreement would be 10 years with 10 year renewals. Ten year extensions would be based on successful program performance providing 5-year performance reviews by Council of 5-year benchmarks.

    Ted Carlson reported agreements related to Transportation Impact Fees [TIFs]. The City code allows 100% credit for redevelopment. The proposal for the waterfront is to look at the historical use of the industrial site and award previous trip credit during redevelopment. The project will be given credit for 1077 trips. The credit can be used however the Port or developer would want to use it. There was discussion of the process of calculating the credits. The waterfront redevelopment could also be eligible for urban village development TIF reduction credits. Additionally, Council has the option of waiving TIFs for development that provides substantial public benefit. Those fees would have to be made up elsewhere.

    Mr. Carlson reviewed the handout “Offsite Mitigation Requirements & Estimated Costs for Waterfront District. These are the requirements that would identified in the EIS. There has been conversation with the Port to answer the questions: When would these requirements need to be made?; and, Who would be doing those offsite mitigations?

    As the fine points of these areas of agreement have been negotiated, it has been a challenge to look into the future for the waterfront and address offsite mitigation and concurrency issues knowing that other projects will be going on in Bellingham as well. The Old Town project or more development in the Downtown will affect the transportation system. There is no way to predict the sequence of what will happen and when to be sure of the waterfront component.

    Leslie Bryson reviewed that there are 33 acres of park land in the area. Twenty-two of those acres will be dedicated by the Port over the course of development. They are illustrated in the Draft Sub-area Plan. By Code, land is appraised and park impact fees are determined at the time of dedication. The City has agreed to appraise the property by parcel at the start of the process to determine the total non-park impact fee credits. The land will be appraised at the start of the project and credit will be assessed at the time the land is dedicated. The city will not have to bear the cost of maintaining the properties before development occurs.

    Jeff Thomas reported on work done with the Port related to the processing of project applications for an agreement to use existing process as much as possible. The regulations adopted will make up a chapter in the BMC. Using existing city process makes it as efficient and effective as possible.

    Determination of Consistency is one new process that will be created for this project. This will be a check and balance point to make sure that a proposal is consistent with the PAO and that mitigating measures identified are applicable to the specific development proposal and no additional project level SEPA review will be required. It will be a Type 2 process with a Type 2A process should there be an inconsistency. This would add a consultation with the Port before issuance of the Determination of Consistency or Determination of Inconsistency would be issued.

    There has been discussion with the Port staff on different types of transitional uses, interim uses, and temporary uses and what those terms will mean in regard to waterfront district regulations. It is essentially what is already laid out in the draft sub-area plan. The log pond area will remain transitional. A development regulation for seafood processing will be added as a transitional use.

    The documents will move forward together to be able to consider everything at once given that all are interdependent. It provides ease of administration in that a change, and the effects of that change on other documents, can be done concurrently and holistically. Otherwise, they considered one at a time and then reconsidered one at a time whenever they are affected.
c) Infrastructure Phasing

    Ms. Stewart and Mr. Carlson reviewed the handout of the Phasing Plan for Infrastructure Improvements and Associated Development Potential for Marine Trades Area; Downtown Waterfront, Log Pond, Shipping Terminal and Cornwall Beach Area together with the extensive footnotes.
d) Funding Strategy

    Mr. Carlson explained that all of the infrastructure projects identified in the phasing plan are included in the 6-year TIP. Only two projects are funded now: Central and Granary-Bloedel Avenue, phase 1.

    The department continues to pursue funding grants for the projects in phase 1 and 2. Financing tools discussed were:
          Street Funds
          Utility funds
          Federal Funds

    Wrap up

    Terry Bornemann thanked staff and noted the drastic changes in the economy since the project started. Much time has been spent reevaluating.

    Charlie Sheldon was invited to speak. He stated that this project has taken a lot of work and that City team has been great to work with. There still needs to be demolition and clean up done. Phase 1 and 2 has 2 million square feet and could take 40 years to develop. He hopes the documents will soon go to the Planning Commission.

    Mike Stoner agreed it has taken much more time than anticipated. The work product though is high quality and represents a good integration of multiple disciplines at the table.

    Mr. Weiss requested that staff create a table that shows existing policies and what the differences are for this project. He would like to compare exceptions to current policy. Ms. Stewart agreed to append such a table to the document.

    Michael Lilliquist raised the issue of non-motorized transportation and that it needs to be included in the building phase to avoid having to retrofit later. Mr. Carlson responded that transportation will be multi-modal but is not shown in the documents being reviewed this day.

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 12:33 PM

Terry Bornemann, Waterfront Committee Chair

ATTEST: J. Lynne Walker, Executive Assistant to the Bellingham City Council

This is a digital copy of an original document located at Bellingham's City Hall. The City of Bellingham specifically disclaims any responsibility or liability for the contents of this document. The City of Bellingham does not verify the correctness, accuracy, or validity of the information appearing in this document.