Laurelhurst Community Club                                                     

Serving 2800 Households in Seattle’s Laurelhurst Neighborhood


October 11, 2004



Councilmember Richard Conlin, Chair

Transportation Committee and

Members of the Transportation Committee

P.O. Box 34025

Seattle, WA 98124-4025


RE:  Street Vacation Policies


Dear Councilmembers Conlin, Godden, Rasmussen and McIver:


            The Laurelhurst Community Club Board of Trustees appreciates your efforts over the past couple of years to develop comprehensive street vacation policies.  Your draft proposal provides objective criteria to address many of the issues that surface when a street vacation is sought.  We believe the policies would be more effective, however, if you also address issues relating to vacation of waterways and if you include provisions promoting community involvement in the street vacation process.


            On page 25 of Attachment A, you set forth policies placing restrictions on vacation of rights-of-way abutting bodies of water, yet you do not address vacation of waterways.  You note that vacation of a street or alley or portion of a street or alley that abuts a body of water is regulated by RCW 35.79.035 and SMC 15.62.080, but do not address vacation of state waterways, something that is governed by RCW 79.93.060.  That state law allows vacation of a waterway upon request by ordinance or resolution of the city council of the city where the waterway is located if approved by the commissioner of public lands.  We ask that the restrictions you have developed for rights-of-way abutting bodies of water also expressly apply to waterways.


            We also hope that you will include polices providing for public notice and community involvement in street vacation processes at an early stage.  Community groups and other stakeholders beyond adjacent landowners should have notice and an opportunity to review petition applications as early as possible.  We support the recommendation of the Northeast District Council for installation of a “white board” similar to those used for master use permits to ensure public notice and an opportunity to participate in the process.


            We hope you will consider our recommendations regarding the street vacation policies.




Jeannie Hale, President                                     Liz Ogden, LCC Transportation Committee

3425 West Laurelhurst Drive NE                                  5005 48th Avenue NE

Seattle, Washington  98105                                          Seattle, Washington  98105

206-525-5135 / fax 206-525-9631                              206-517-5862 / fax 206-729-5132