To the Editor

December 1, 2009

By Contributor

City problems

Street corner eyesores, signage are higher priorities than new parkI read about the amount of time and effort that city officials are planning to devote to the new downtown park. This is designed to be a jewel for the city of Issaquah and I think it is a wonderful idea.

However, I think there is another problem that needs to be addressed before the park. That is the intersection of Gilman Boulevard and Front Street North. Of the three exits off Interstate 90 this is the one that most people identify as the way into Issaquah. And what do you see when you arrive?

On the northeast corner is a closed Arco station with a chain link fence around it. On the southeast corner are a Skippers location, a building torn down and another chain link fence. On the other two corners are Chevron and Shell gas stations, but behind the Chevron and next to Oil Can Henry’s is a closed Shell station. This one does not have a chain link fence around it – instead we are treated to a selection of dead or in-repair cars surrounding it. City officials need to encourage these owners to clean up their properties – sell it or whatever to make the entrance to our lovely city more appealing.

The second part of the problem is signage. How do we find things in Issaquah? The Village Theatre, the hatchery, the community center and pool all deserve some signage helping visitors find their way. The only signage I see is for Boehm’s, which is an institution and deserves the signage at the intersection and on the freeway. However, the Triple X is also an institution. It is the last root beer stand in the U.S. and brings a lot of visitors to Issaquah. Signage directing visitors to the Triple X would certainly be appropriate.

And back to the new, to be, downtown park. Without signage, how will folks find it? And without a more attractive entrance to our fair city, why would anyone choose Issaquah to visit?

Lee Woods

Downtown Issaquah


Parking spaces in front need to be better utilized, more clearly marked

With the increased library use, the use of the five space quick parking area in front of the library has increased, too.

However, when someone parks in the middle of the space to save a few steps (even if they really need the exercise) and will not think of others by moving on up to the end of the space, it makes it difficult for the next person to easily park. The new book deposit machines do not make for a quick deposit either, so the car spaces are being held longer than previously.

If the selfish use of the quick parking continues, by taking a bite out of the middle, then it may be necessary to put up a gas station type reminder sign — “Please move to the most forward parking space.”

It would be helpful if spaces were marked. A few times, trucks have parked while servicing the business across the street.

Ken Sessler


Elks Lodge

Thank you for hosting fundraiser for city employee’s cancer-stricken wife

I wanted to share with you the generosity, compassion and support we found in the Lake Sammamish Elks Lodge No. 1843, located in Issaquah.

Our co-worker’s wife was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer. Because of her inability to continue working as she receives treatment, we knew that his family would be struggling financially.

We decided to host a benefit for his family that included a friendly poker tournament and a silent auction, and asked the Elks Lodge for their approval to host the event at their lodge in Issaquah. They were so gracious and supportive of our event, stating that this epitomizes their mission and goal toward helping the community.

This is truly a wonderful organization, represented by a compassionate membership and an even greater willingness to serve our community. We can’t thank the Lake Sammamish Elks Lodge No. 1843 enough!

Greg Keith

Bonney Lake (work in Issaquah)

Klahanie Park

Too many questions remain about proposed transfer to King County

King County plans to transfer Klahanie Park to Sammamish by the end of the year. The transfer has caught a lot of Klahanie residents by surprise. It is happening very quickly with minimal public awareness and input, all for the sake of saving money. The transfer raises a lot of questions:

How can King County give a park in one community to another where there is no representation?

Why won’t King County let Klahanie take care of the park, at least until all of Klahanie is annexed to either Issaquah or Sammamish?

Why would Issaquah allow Sammamish to annex the park (the crown jewel of Klahanie) from the Klahanie potential annexation area, if it still wants to annex Klahanie?

What recourse does Klahanie have if Sammamish doesn’t take care of the park or makes changes that negatively impact Klahanie residents?

Sammamish has offered a nonresident seat on its park board. Does this position have any real power?

Do Klahanie residents realize that Sammamish plans to change the grass fields into fenced, lighted, artificial turf fields that will be operated more hours in the day and more days in the year?

Are the residents prepared for the traffic, noise and lights resulting from the extended use?

Is the artificial turf safe for the environment? For the children?

Does Klahanie realize that the sledding hill, picnics and pick-up-games are in jeopardy?

Does the artificial turf, fence and lights constitute the green space that King County initially required the Klahanie developers to provide in order to have high-density housing?

Is everyone aware that the park includes the forest and bog behind Audubon Ridge, not just the play fields?

Lastly, shouldn’t Klahanie have a major say in what happens to the park, when the residents are going to both be the main beneficiaries as well as bear the consequences?

Let’s slow down the potential transfer and make sure Klahanie has a seat at the King County table.

Sarah Jakle


War protesters

Originator giving new president’s policies a chance before starting up again

Bill Fowler’s letter, “Protestors: Where did the anti-war sentiment go?” in the Nov. 11 Press states, “I wonder where all those protestors have gone. Could it be that motivations for these protests were in fact veiled political campaigning?”

I was the one who began the anti-war protest at Sunset and Front streets in June 2007 and continued until late December 2008. During that time, once or twice a week, for two hours a session, I was joined by a number of wonderful new friends.

In June 2007, I did not know who was going to be the Democratic or Republican candidate for president. I was an early supporter of John Edwards (a big mistake). I quit my protests in December 2008 because Barack Obama had been elected and had promised to withdraw a brigade per month for 16 months. I don’t know how many soldiers are in a brigade, but it sounded like a lot.

Should I protest again? I guess I’ll wait until April or May or next year to see if President Obama fulfills his pledge. Then, there is the question of Afghanistan. It seems we’re entering another Vietnam-style quagmire. Is our war policy really decided by the career interests of our 873 generals and admirals rather than the well being of our 1.4 million citizen soldiers?

I must be honest: It is difficult to motivate myself to stand on the street corner, holding my sign. I would much rather be home watching TV. Yet, it is difficult to watch the news each day while young men and women are dying in these senseless wars. Maybe if I can find the strength to go back out, Mr. Fowler will join me.

Calvin C. Clawson


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