Residents briefed about YWCA housing facility

December 8, 2008

By Chantelle Lusebrink

Several residents attended a community meeting discussing the pending lawsuit against King County and the new YWCA housing facility Nov. 24 at the King County Library Service Center.

The meeting was held by members of the Cedar Hills Rural Preservation Alliance, a group of concerned residents who live near the planned facility and who filed the lawsuit in Snohomish County Superior Court.

The new facility, Passage Point, is at the former Cedar Hills Alcohol Treatment Center, 15900 227th Ave. S.E., near Cedar Grove Road.

The alliance’s members are from neighborhoods near the facility and along Cedar Grove Road.

The group has filed a legal challenge against county officials who they say authorized a nonconforming use permit to develop a dense urban housing project in an area county officials have zoned as rural. 

“The meeting was very positive and folks left with a better understanding of the issues that are being challenged in Snohomish County Superior Court,” Sean Kronberg, a member of the alliance, wrote in an e-mail.

The meeting focused on information regarding the legal challenge, and the long-term effects Passage Point may have on the community and the Issaquah School District. 

The group filed the suit in November 2007 to challenge the lawfulness of the County Council’s decision to provide easements to and sell the alcohol treatment facility to the YWCA for Passage Point. 

The suit was on hold, but the issuance of building permits by county officials has brought it to the forefront.

However, the YWCA is moving forward with remodeling construction this winter. 

The county’s permits allow YWCA officials to remodel the old facility into 46 units of one- and two-bedroom apartments. The facility will provide housing, employment and counseling services to men and women who have recently been released from incarceration, hospitalization or who are homeless and wish to reunite with and act as caregivers to their children. 

Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or clusebrink@isspress.com. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.

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