City Traffic Engineer Richard Perez met with 80 to 100 Twin Lakes residents in the library at Decatur High School to discuss a planned street connection between Soundview Manor, a proposed 28-unit housing development along Dash Point Road, and the established community of Twin Lakes.
Mr. Perez’s stated purpose was to discuss the “mitigation” of traffic through Twin Lakes to accommodate the increased flow of vehicles that would occur when the connection is completed. Without a single person there to act in favor of the proposal we, the Twin Lakes residents, were in attendance to tell the City of Federal Way that we do not want a connection made between the development and our long-established community. To Mr. Perez’s credit, he remained composed throughout the discussion, which was heated but not hostile.
A community member asked if there were any members of the decision-making body of the Federal Way City Council in attendance at the meeting. Mr. Perez told us there were no members in attendance because the council members make it a point not to attend such meetings so that they would not be unduly influenced when it came time for them to vote in council. I suggested that the many people who attended showed up for no good reason since we were all there to stop the connection. Nevertheless, the meeting continued for nearly two-and-a-half hours.
The developer of Soundview Manor send two men whom we were told were consultants on the project. The two consultants sat behind me and when I turned to ask one of them how large the average house in the development would be, his answer was, “I don’t have that information.” I would think that the size of the homes would reflect the occupancy of the residences and thereby indicate the number of cars and the impact the development would have on the traffic. Not knowing or not divulging such information concerning the development’s impact on traffic is not excusable.
While hands were raised for the entire two-and-a-half hours and many residents expressed their disfavor for the proposed connection, a petition was written up, passed around and signed against the proposed connection by everyone in attendance.
Here’s the rub. The developer has stated that it does not want the connection between Soundview Manor and Twin Lakes, and the homeowners in Twin Lakes have vehemently expressed that they do not want a connection made with the development. Mr. Perez said that the reason for the connecting road between the two dissenting entities is the Federal Way city code. So, it’s the city code that is dictating the construction of a connecting road that nobody wants.
As a closing addendum and unbeknownst to many residents of Twin Lakes who live along 36th Avenue SW (I think there was only one person from that area in attendance at this meeting), the opening of a connection between Soundview Manor carries with it the possibility of the barrier being removed between Bayview Estates and 36th Avenue SW in Twin Lakes, according to a King County Hearing Examiner decision made years ago when Bayview Estates was established.
The proposed connection now impacts all Twin Lakes residents living north of SW 320th Street.
Matt Sato, Federal Way