Rezoning would have negative impact

Letter to the Editor.

I am not a lobbyist, a wealthy landowner, politician or lawyer. I am a

citizen of North Bend and resident of Forster Woods. I strongly oppose

the proposed amendment before the King County Council to change the

zoning at South I-90 A and B from forest production to residential.

I live along Ribary Creek and have already experienced loss of

property due to erosion after flooding in 1995 and 1996. As a result of this

flooding, Ribary Creek rerouted itself. This happened after Forster Woods was

developed. I did not live in North Bend at the time that its development was

disputed, but I believe that there is a question as to whether or not it should

have been built at all.

A small section of Foster Woods is built in a hazardous erosion area.

The argument that is being made is that Mr. Zemp’s property is in the vicinity

of the homes at the same elevation, similar slopes, etc. Yes! A hazardous

erosion area as mapped by King County. Almost all of his property is in a

hazardous erosion area.

Let us all remember the lesson we learned and one that I teach my

two daughters daily: Two wrongs don’t make a right. Mr. Zemp purchased

this property, knowing that it was zoned Forest Production. Forest

Production zoning is meant to remain just that, as outlined by the Growth

Management Act, in order to preserve the rural

character of communities and to prevent urban sprawl. He has hired a paid

lobbyist to solicit our King County Council members, and has dangled a

carrot that if they will rezone his property, he will give them access to the

Rattlesnake Ridge Conservatory through his property.

The county is very interested in this access, but it is unclear

whether the trail access would be viable. It is located on a very steep slope, and

is also located in a hazardous erosion area. In addition, any development

of this trail is contingent upon “extensive public process and analysis

before zoning,” and outlined by the county in the Rattlesnake Mountain

Scenic Plan.

The city is against this spot zoning, and so am I. I encourage all

citizens of North Bend to contact all of the King County Council

members and ask them to consider these changes carefully, as their

impact could have irreparable consequences to us all.

Susan Sellers

North Bend