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Museum CRC project OK'd

SNOQUALMIE - The Northwest Railway Museum's plan to build a Conservation and Restoration Center (CRC) appears to be in the clear.

A deadline for appealing the granting of permits to the museum to build the CRC came and went last month. Northwest Railway Museum Executive Director Richard Anderson said the museum will continue its permitting process with Snoqualmie in hopes of beginning construction sometime next year.

The CRC has been fought by landowners near the proposed site of the 8,100-square-foot building off Stone Quarry Road since it was first proposed. The owners have argued the building will aggravate flooding in the area and cause environmental problems.

Variances and a conditional use permit have been needed for the project and the city's approval of them had been appealed by the Luce and McFadden families, landowners near the site. The families contended the decision granting the permits didn't take into account environmental impact testimony.

After multiple appeals, the decision was ultimately left to the City Council, which approved the variances and permit in October. That decision could have been appealed to the King County Superior Court, but the deadline for doing so passed without action.

The attorney for the families who own land near the proposed site did not return calls seeking comment.

Anderson said that although the deadline for appeals has passed, he expects he has not heard the last of opponents to the CRC. There is still plenty of time and permits until the CRC is built.

"I'm not sure whether they can do anything else [to block CRC]," he said. "I'm sure we haven't heard the last of them."

* For information on the Northwest Railway Museum, visit www.trainmuseum.org.

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