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Posted on: October 3, 2017

Council Approves Zoning Changes West of Highlands

The City Council approved a proposal Oct. 2 to annex and change the zoning of some land (see map) between the Issaquah Highlands and Interstate 90. 

The annexation is expected to be finalized later this fall. The land is currently not located in the City of Issaquah – but instead remains an “island” of King County. The City’s proposed zoning would only apply when annexation to Issaquah takes place.

The county land is currently zoned for mineral or residential (one or four dwelling units per acre), depending on the parcel.

On Oct. 2, the City Council approved a motion to change the zoning from King County’s zoning. That action enables several parcels now zoned for residential development to become open space. Preservation of forested hillsides is consistent with the Mountains to Sound Greenway designation.

In addition to the open space parcels, the City Council identified zoning for:

  • Potential uses on City-owned land that could include a new elementary school and a location for business offices/garages for a private utility (freeing up land for affordable housing in Central Issaquah).
  • A future City water reservoir on a parcel currently owned by the Washington State Department of Transportation.  

For the identified uses on the City parcel, the City must first divide the property into smaller parcels. As this is City-owned property, that decision would be made by the City Council. 

Following that action – should the Issaquah School District and the private utility desire to purchase the newly-created parcels from the City – that would also require the City Council to authorize the execution of a Purchase and Sale Agreement. 

It is likely these future decisions will be brought before the City Council (and include public processes) no sooner than December, but more likely in the first quarter of 2018.

Before the final vote Oct. 2, the City Council held two public hearings on this issue on July 17 (watch here) and Sept. 5 (watch here). 

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