Laurelhurst Community Club                                                     

Serving 2800 Households and Businesses in Seattle’s Laurelhurst Neighborhood

November 10, 2005



Judith Thornton

3338 43rd Avenue NE

Seattle, Washington  98105


RE:  Waterway No. 1 Improvements


Dear Judith,


Thank you for sending the Laurelhurst Community Club a copy of your November 6th letter to Rex Thompson of the State Department of Natural Resources regarding improvements to Waterway No. 1.  Installation of the rocks at the water’s edge was the first order of business as established in our design consensus meeting on September 15 and was in no way surreptitious.  The neighbors were unanimous in their wish to improve safety and access at the water’s edge.  Shane DeWald, the City’s landscape architect, recommended and neighbors agreed that improvements to the waterway should begin at the water’s edge to avoid damage that could result to landscaping and improvements on the upland portion of the waterway.


Shane submitted a letter of application and schematic to the Department of Planning and Development (DPD) on September 30th.  Prior to that date, she met on site with a DPD representative to develop the plan.  Because of the limited scope of the project, DPD granted an exemption from SEPA/Shoreline Master Program permitting requirements. 


Pursuant to the plan submitted to DPD, several weathered, slip-resistant, granite rocks were delivered on the afternoon of Wednesday, November 2nd.  We are glad that Shane was able to brief you about this phase of improvements to the waterway at the site at that time.  A small backhoe was onsite on Friday, November 4th to place the rocks under Shane’s direction.  Shredded wood chips have been delivered to the site and are being installed to protect the disturbed soil areas.   


As discussed at the community design meeting, the plan for Waterway No. 1 is to start at the water’s edge and work toward the street.  Currently, both of the adjacent property owners have permits for private use of a portion of the public property.  The permit fees paid are the basis of the funding available to improve the public space. 


A draft design for the rest of the project as defined at this time is being prepared and will be distributed for comment.  This design will reflect the consensus reached during the September 15 meeting.  Generally, it includes safety and enhanced access at the water’s edge, an area landscaped with drought-tolerant plants, a path to the water and benches, a lawn area, a resurfaced basketball court and a planted parking strip.  In the design, the side boundaries will intentionally be left vague in the event of reduction or elimination of the permitted private uses.


In your letter to Rex Thompson, you invited him to attend LCC’s November board of trustees meeting to discuss waterway issues.  Unfortunately, our November agenda is full.  We hope to invite Rex Thompson to a future meeting when we are further along in the design process.  We will make sure to let you know should he be on the agenda for a future meeting.


Thank you again for sending us a copy of your letter to Rex Thompson.  We look forward to working with you on implementing improvements to Waterway No. 1.





Liz Ogden, Project Chair                                              Jeannie Hale, President

5005 48th Avenue NE                                                  3425 West Laurelhurst Drive NE

Seattle, Washington  98105                                          Seattle, Washington  98105

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


cc:  Senator Ken Jacobsen; Representative Jim McIntire, Rex Thompson, State Department of Natural Resources