Dear Bainbridge Islanders,
Throughout September, the City is focused on completing several significant projects that have been high priorities for 2019.
Near the ferry terminal, you will see the Olympic Drive Non-motorized Improvements coming closer to completion in the next two weeks. This is a challenging time for the project, as we are very close to finishing all the construction tasks, but the area remains in transition. Important features like bike lanes and sidewalks are still impacted. Please use caution - and patience - as you travel in this vicinity. City staff are working hard to provide as much outreach and public information as possible to inform drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians about the change in traffic patterns. Watch the
"how to video" on the project webpage
or pick up a brochure at City Hall to learn more. There's additional information on project status below.
Over the next two weeks, the City Council expects to complete work to develop new regulations for subdivisions and to change the City's design guidelines. With these initiatives coming to fruition, the Council will then consider whether to significantly narrow the development moratorium that has been in place since January 2018. At the business meeting this week, the Council outlined an approach to the moratorium which they will formally consider at the September 24 meeting. This approach would lift the moratorium for most areas of the island in early December 2019. City staff will use the time in October and November to complete training on the new subdivision rules and design guidelines, to conduct public outreach on these impacts, and to host public workshops for residents and developers who are affected by the changes.
Under this plan, the moratorium would be lifted for all areas outside the Winslow Master Plan Study Area (see map below). Within the Winslow Master Plan Study Area, the Central Core Overlay District is already exempt from the moratorium as a result of Council action in 2018. The remaining areas of Winslow would be subject to the moratorium until June 30, 2020 to allow the Council to continue work to develop new incentives for affordable housing. During this period, subdivisions would be allowed to proceed, however multi-family projects that have not already completed a pre-application meeting will still be on hold.
Another major topic discussed at the meeting this week concerned new rules related to Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs), tiny homes, and the potential for the City to allow RVs for housing. The Council decided to put their work on these issues onto separate paths to allow some changes to move forward sooner, while Council and staff work to better define other aspects. Specifically, new rules to encourage ADUs and tiny homes will be finalized in October, and then forwarded to the
for review. The topic of allowing RVs for housing will come forward later, as a separate ordinance, to allow additional work to refine rules to address fire safety, water and sanitation, and other potential requirements such as screening or buffers. At a later date, the Council will also take up rules related to "tiny home villages."
At the study session next week, the Council will receive a briefing from WSDOT on the planned roundabouts for Highway 305. While public comment is not accepted at study sessions, the Council will allow members of the public to submit written questions at the meeting. Other topics will include additional discussion of proposed changes to the City's Ethics Program, and next steps for two types of incentives to encourage affordable housing (inclusionary zoning and multi-family tax exemptions). The Council will also continue their consideration of a request from Friends of the Farms (FOF) for the City to provide FOF with annual funding to support the organization's work to manage the City's public farmland.
Please see below for more detailed information about these topics and other work in progress.
Olympic Drive project nears completion
We're preparing for the final phase of construction on the Olympic Drive Non-motorized Improvements Project and expect completion later this month.
The sidewalk on the west side of Olympic Drive is now open. However, the sidewalk on the east side will remain closed until the contractor receives materials to complete the pedestrian traffic signals. The project team expects all tasks to be complete shortly after the equipment arrives.
Next week, weather permitting, the contractor will continue work on pavement markings, including green bike boxes and sections of bike lanes. The new center bicycle lane (heading north from the ferry) and the southbound bicycle lane will remain closed until all traffic work is completed, including the pedestrian signal.
In the meantime, we hope you'll take some time to review an
of the improvements on the project
that will also be included on the Washington State Ferries (WSF) monitors in the terminals and aboard the Seattle-Bainbridge vessels. We encourage you to please share the webpage with your family, friends, passengers, customers, students, fellow cyclists, neighbors, etc. It's important for all users to understand the changes to keep everyone safe on the road!
to learn more.
Bike for Pie to be held this weekend
City staff will be at the annual Bike for Pie event this Sunday, Sept. 15 to share information about the Olympic Drive project.
is an annual event sponsored by Squeaky Wheels, a bicycle advocacy group, to celebrate cycling for bicycle riders of all abilities. The after-ride festivities at Town Square (location of Farmers Market) will include live music and, of course, some freshly-baked pie.
You can choose the 9-mile family ride or 32-mile challenge route.
All riders must check-in between 8:30 and 10:30 Sunday morning. The registration table will be at
for all the details. We hope to see you there!
Council directs staff to create individual proposals on ADUs, RVs, and tiny home communities
The City Council continued its policy discussion on Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs), recreational vehicles (RVs) as residences, and tiny home communities during the September 10 business meeting.
During the discussion, the Council decided to separate the topics of ADUs, RVs and tiny home communities into individual ordinances so that some changes can move forward sooner. Each topic will now move forward on different timelines.
The Council will complete its discussion on
requiring common ownership for ADUs and allowing tiny homes as ADUs (DRAFT Ordinance 2019-09) at a business meeting in October (date to be determined). This ordinance will then be forwarded to the Planning Commission for review and recommendation.
The Council directed staff to return with a separate ordinance to allow and regulate RVs as residences in a manner that integrates review of public health and safety issues.
Discussion of how and where to allow tiny home communities will also be continued to a future City Council discussion.
Click here to watch the September 10 Council discussion.
Council sets public hearing on development moratorium extension
During the September 10 business meeting, the City Council set a public hearing for September 24 to consider extending the moratorium (currently set to expire October 3) for two months and then extend the moratorium until June 30, 2020 only within the Winslow Master Plan Study Area
excluding the Central Core Overlay District
and subdivisions). There would be an exception for projects that dedicate 10% of dwelling units as affordable housing.
The two-month extension would allow the City time for public outreach on new subdivision standards and design guidelines that are expected to be adopted by the City Council on September 24. The additional six-month extension for some projects in the Winslow area allows the City Council to consider adopting a Multi-family Property Tax Exemption and/or inclusionary zoning regulations to promote affordable housing.
If Council completes the
affordable housing tasks before the June 30 deadline, then the moratorium could be lifted early.
WSDOT to provide SR 305 roundabout project update at Sept. 17 Council meeting
Have a question about the SR 305 roundabout project? Share it with Council
during next week's study session.
The presentation will focus on an update on the project design and construction schedule, as well as on the options being considered for the SR 305 and Day Road intersection.
During the Sept. 17 presentation, there will be index cards at a back table in the Council Chamber for those who wish to submit questions. Mayor Kol Medina will read your questions during the presentation.
Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator Steve Pyke retired this week after 34 years of service to Bainbridge Island.
Treatment Plant Operator Steve Pyke retires after 34 years of service
Steve was hired by the City of Winslow in 1985 as groundskeeper for Waterfront Park. Once the City of Bainbridge Island was incorporated in 1991, he moved to the streets division of Public Works and was responsible for all signage. In 1995, he became a wastewater treatment plant operator and worked as operator in charge for the next 24 years.
Steve is one of four current City staff who worked for the City of Winslow prior to annexation.
Under Steve's leadership, the WWTP team developed an outstanding reputation with outside regulatory authorities.
During the past five years, the plant has earned the WA State Department of Ecology's "Outstanding Performance" award indicating the plant achieved full compliance with its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit.
"During his time with the City, Steve set an outstanding example for others," said Public Works Manager Chuck Krumheuer. "He routinely took emergency calls after hours, on weekends, and during his vacation time. He will be remembered as a quality and detail-oriented professional who took his responsibilities seriously. He was a fully-engaged staff member who could be counted on 100%."
Congratulations, Steve! We wish you the best during your well-earned retirement.
City's preparedness partnership to be highlighted at state conference
The City's Emergency Management Coordinator Anne LeSage will present on the City's emergency preparedness partnership with the Bainbridge Island Fire Department and Bainbridge Prepares during the Sept. 17
Washington State Emergency Management Association
annual conference in Stevenson, Washington. She will be joined by Bainbridge Island Fire Department Deputy Fire Chief Jared Moravec and Bainbridge Prepares Co-Founder Scott James. The trio's presentation,
titled "Shaping The Future of Community Preparedness: a Whole Community Approach on Bainbridge Island", will highlight the early stages of the partnership, how the partnership evolved into its current structure, and ways the partnership is equipping the island to respond to and recover from a major disaster.
Through volunteer engagement, community-based training initiatives, implementation of Map Your Neighborhood, building food resilience, serving access and functional needs, preparing local organizations, and creating a Hub shelter system, Bainbridge Island is uniquely preparing the whole community. Click
to learn more about how the partnership is preparing the island.
Don't forget - you can also learn about this topic and other emergency preparedness topics during the upcoming Three Days of Preparedness events.
Voting opens for Something New 2019 People's Choice Award
The Public Art Committee (PAC) has opened the polls for the annual Something New People's Choice Award. Community members are invited to weigh in with their vote for their favorite piece.
The two sculptures vying for this year's People's Choice Award include:
- "Stargazer" by Timm Duffy (pictured on left) was installed along Winslow Way near Ericksen Avenue (in front of T&C). Duffy's piece, "Stargazer" is based on a neighbor in Boulder, Colorado who would "look at the stars as they came out every night in the summer."
- "Daphne" by Karsten Boysen (on right) was installed in the harbor-side plaza at the southern end of Madison Avenue. Boysen has created an abstract rendition of the Greek myth of Daphne being pursued by Apollo by changing it into a laurel tree as a metaphor for spring.
Both pieces were installed in July and will be on display until summer of 2020.
The recipient of the People's Choice Award will be announced in early 2020. In addition to the prestige of being voted "The People's Choice," the award includes a $1,000 honorarium.
Voting is open through December 31, 2019. Ballots may be cast online or in person. Click here to vote online. Paper ballots can be found and submitted at the office of Arts & Humanities Bainbridge in the Marge Williams Center (221 Winslow Way W, Suite 201) or in the lobby at City Hall.
Something New aims to provide a dynamic public art experience and an ongoing opportunity for sculptors from around the Pacific Northwest to exhibit their work. Each year, the project brings a collection of sculptures on loan to outdoor sites around Winslow. The infrastructure at each site is permanent. However, the artwork on display is not. After each yearlong exhibition, new art is selected and rotated into place, bringing "something new" to Bainbridge Island year after year.
Volunteers needed for annual beach cleanup
Join Sustainable Bainbridge volunteers Saturday, Sept. 28 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for the annual Bainbridge Island Beach Cleanup. It's a great opportunity to protect our wildlife and 53 miles of shoreline.
Bainbridge Island joins with Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup every September to help in the enormous effort to clean our oceans and waterways.
Last year, more than 400 people participated in the Bainbridge cleanup. They collected large quantities of
Styrofoam, an inflatable raft, pipes, tires, a fiberglass dinghy, metal, plastic debris, and more.
Click here for more information and to sign up to join the effort and keep our waterfront clean!
BIFD to host new Station 22 open house
The Bainbridge Island Fire Department (BIFD) will host an open house for its new Fire Station 22 on Saturday, Sept. 28.
The open house will be held 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Station 22, located at 7934 NE Bucklin Hill Road.
Visitors will be able to tour the entire station. The duty crew and admin staff will be happy to answer questions and show guests around the facility. Visitors will be able to get up close to the fire trucks and aid car, see where the mechanic works and services the vehicles, and take a look at where the firefighters sleep and eat!
Upcoming Events & Meetings
for the full calendar list.