Twede's Café hit by arson

Sometime before 2 a.m. on July 2, someone broke into the

famous Twede's Café in North Bend, stole $450 and set two fires in the

building's rear section.

It took 20 firefighters about one hour to extinguish the blaze and

officials estimated the damage at $250,000.

But Twede's wasn't totally destroyed — most of the destruction

was contained to the storage areas where food was kept. The dining area

was spared from flames, but sustained heat and smoke damage.

Signatures to save roadside memorials fall short

Efforts to get 180,000 signatures to place an initiative on

November's ballot that would protect roadside memorials were defeated when it

was apparent the goal would not be reached.

Tony and Amy Blount had been working since February to gather

the signatures after the King County Department of Transportation warned

the family that their son's memorial would be removed. A memorial was

placed for their son, Brandon Blount, on the corner of North Bend Way and

Tanner Road the day he was killed in a 1997 car accident.

According to the county's code, only a few things are allowed in

the county road's right-of-way, and the list doesn't include memorials.

The Blounts ended up collecting well over 70,000 signatures.

Plans announced for Grouse Ridge gravel pit

A document was released that proposes constructing a gravel pit

on Grouse Ridge in North Bend.

Cadman Inc., a supplier of gravel, sand, quarry rock and ready-mix

concrete, wants to put a gravel operation on two sites of

Weyerhaeuser-owned land situated between Interstate

90's exits 34 and 38. The land takes up approximately 300 acres.

The document, called the draft environmental impact

statement (DEIS), lists what impacts on the environment, traffic and neighbors

if built and gives options to minimize potential problems.

The proposed gravel pit's neighbors include the Woodriver

development, homes on various sized properties, a Buddhist compound,

Seattle East Truck Town and a future elementary and middle school site.

Cadman estimates it could extract gravel for approximately 25 years from the

site, which would be donated to Mountains to Sound Greenway to remain

a greenbelt after resources are tapped.

Valley to receive $1.7 million for flood relief

In an effort to reduce the devastating impacts of Valley flooding,

Rep. Jennifer Dunn secured more than $1.7 million in federal funds

for Snoqualmie and North Bend projects.

Historically, floods have hit both cities and left them with millions

of dollars in damage and immeasurable impacts to their residents.

Snoqualmie alone receives an average of $1.6 million in damage annually.

The new funding will go toward a flood reduction project in

Snoqualmie that will start next summer and be completed within just a few

months. In addition, $50,000 will be spent for a North Bend flooding

feasibility study.

Residents blast Cadman proposal

Emotions ran high when at least 40 residents sounded off at a

public hearing for Cadman Inc.'s proposed North Bend Gravel Operation.

Approximately 160 people attended the meeting, held July 11

at Mount Si High School for the purpose of submitting formal comments for

or against the project's draft environmental impact statement. Most

comments were in opposition of the project.

The comments will be taken into consideration when county

officials form their official recommendations on the project — whether to

approve it, and with what conditions.

Plan urges city to OK sewers

A new plan to build sewers and a wastewater treatment facility in

Carnation promises to keep rivers clear while allowing for more

residential and business growth.

The proposal, conducted by American Engineering Corp.

of Redmond, was authorized by the City Council and the local Sewer

Advisory Committee. It calls for the city to spend more than $3 million on

initial construction of a wastewater treatment facility and another $3.2 million on

the first phase of a city sewer system. The rest of the city would be phased in

over a 20-year period. The estimated cost of those three phases is more than

$5.7 million.

Soccer field may be excavated

Weeks after Native American artifacts were found by crews building

a soccer field in Fall City, the question of what will be done next

remains undecided.

King County Park System spokesman Al Dams said it was known

for more than 10 years ago that the site at State Route 203 and Neal Road

contained Native American artifacts. But a soccer field was being

constructed on the county-owned property, called the Fall City Community Park.

Workers were using equipment to remove soil when the items

were found — and work stopped.

The site was found in the mid-1980s, a representative of

the Snoqualmie Tribe said.

Design guidelines finalized for North Bend

After years in planning, North Bend officials finalized the city's

design standards and guidelines. The document will shape the city's

future look with its guidelines on the construction and design of residential

and business buildings, as well as parks, sidewalks and streets.

Revisions were made to the new guidelines after North Bend

residents and business owners submitted comments and protested painting

restrictions. The new document replaces the last version published in 1992,

which was said to be too vague.

Gravel company wants to blast

Sand, gravel and concrete supplier Glacier Northwest filed an

application to blast hard rock, expand hours and extend operations past 2050 for

its Snoqualmie Sand and Gravel site, located near the Weyerhaeuser

facility in Snoqualmie.

The pit's neighbors have expressed concern over possible noise,

vibration, traffic, water and housing impacts associated with the expansion. But

Glacier representatives said they have studied plans and believe the

proposed changes will have no significantly adverse impacts on the surrounding

area, if efforts are made to minimize potential problems.

Glacier's proposal, if approved, will revise the pit's current

grading permit to allow blasting and extraction of approximately 25 million

tons of hard rock found at the site.

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