MI Weekly

    A weekly update from the City of Mercer Island

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Bruce Bassett

Debbie Bertlin  



Dan Grausz 

Volunteer Opportunities 

9611 SE 36th Street
Mercer Island, WA 98040



Monday - Friday
8:30am to 5:00pm

Donations Requested 

The Mercer Island Food Pantry relies on your non-perishable food donations to keep the shelves stocked year-round.
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May 24, 2017 | Vol. 12 | No. 21
RailThe State of I-90: Update From the City Manager 
Click here to read the mailer online

By now you will have all received the City's mailer sent over the weekend to every household containing valuable information about the upcoming changes to I-90 ramps, and the June 3 closure of the Center Roadway. The City urges Seattle-bound morning commuters in particular to explore every alternative possible ( resources here), including flexible schedules and carpooling, in order to avoid the very heavy congestion expected as drivers navigate Town Center traffic.

Since I wrote my introductory letter for the mailer, there are a number of new developments to report:
  • On May 22, the City and Sound Transit representatives met to try to negotiate a solution, however, the gap for a settlement was too wide to bridge. This is disappointing and deeply frustrating, especially since we anticipate that Sound Transit has not gone far enough to address the City's loss-of-mobility and traffic safety concerns.  It appears that the window of opportunity is closing and all future discussion likely moves to the courts.
  • At the close of business on Tuesday, May 23, the City received notice from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) reiterating its opposition to future Single Occupant Vehicle (SOV) access to westbound I-90 at the Island Crest Way onramp. See press release. Although this is not good news, the City is not giving up on this critical access point, and will be working with our State Congressional delegation to determine possible next steps. The City plans to document the local street impacts as well as demand additional improvements to mitigate the local commute challenges expected after June 3.
  • On the morning of Thursday, June 1, at 10:00am, King County Superior Court Judge Beth Andrus will hear the City's motion for preliminary injunction, requesting her to enjoin the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) from closing the I-90 center roadway and Sound Transit from commencing light rail construction there. 
  •  The City's appeals of prior Court rulings in other related aspects of its I-90 litigation will be heard by the State Supreme Court on June 1 via a conference call. This is to determine if the Supreme Court will take direct review of the City's appeal; it is not a hearing on the merits.
  •  As the June 3 closure looms, the City is exploring every means possible to provide aid and assistance to its residents; please join the City for a Community Traffic and Safety Meeting in mid-June to share your traffic observations and help our adaptive planning. More details to come soon...
Thank you,
Julie Underwood

-For assistance please visit our Commuter Resources page.
-To learn more about recent negotiations and litigation history, visit www.mercergov.org/Rail-FAQ
AlertsJoin the City's Emergency Alerting Service
Click to sign up now for official City of Mercer Island alerts
Last year, the City joined a new emergency alerting system in partnership with King County, using a vendor that serves hundreds of other cities nationwide (Code Red).

This week the City just used it to notify approximately 150 homes of a small water utility incident. Don't miss getting alerts like this!...

ALERT King County allows Mercer Island residents to receive important information about major emergencies via telephone, text, and email based on their Island address.

Sign up today! Registration is free and confidential.

The service will not be used for extremely minor events, only major incidents or emergencies such as: earthquakes, very damaging winter storms, large landslides, and boil-water advisories.

If you don't have a landline telephone any more, it is ESPECIALLY important that you register your cellphone number, or the City has no way of calling/texting you in major emergencies! 
Mercer Island Goes Green
Green_YardsGreen Yard Care
Click for more green gardening information
With warmer weather finally here, many residents are thinking about their gardens! The Grow Smart, Grow Safe guide ranks hundreds of pesticides, fertilizers and soil amendments, helping gardeners find products least hazardous to people, pets and the planet. 

You really can have an attractive landscape in the Pacific Northwest without using hazardous pesticides. Insecticides, herbicides and fungicides that can harm people and pets, and also pollute the environment. By gardening with nature and reducing reliance on harmful chemicals you are creating more livable neighborhoods.  
Here's how you can conserve water, attract beneficial wildlife and keep a kid-friendly yard. Learn more here.                  
HolidayCity Facilities Closed Memorial Day
Click for other City holidays
In observance of Memorial Day, City facilities will be closed on Monday, May 29.  This includes the Mercer Island Community and Event Center (MICEC) where no programs or rentals will be offered on that day.   


For questions and comments on the MI Weekly, contact
Sustainability & Communications Manager Ross Freeman at

ross.freeman@mercergov.org or 206.275.7662.