Ichijo plat development eyed for residential housing

March 26, 2013

By Peter Clark

Parcel two of the Ichijo preliminary plat filled the agenda for the Urban Village Development Commission in its march 19 meeting.

The Issaquah Highlands parcel was received from King County in exchange for retaining green space northwest of Issaquah High School. The presentation regarded plans that are under way to develop the land into residential housing. The meeting allowed for public comment about the upcoming project; few concerns were expressed.

The 4.28 forested acres are in the beginning stages of development.

“The applicant is requesting preliminary plat approval to subdivide Parcel 2 into 36 lots for construction of detached single-family residences,” according to the Washington Department of Transportation transfer of development rights agreement.

The plot south of 14th Place Northeast will “range from approximately 3,000 to 5,700 square feet. The project consists of a main residential street that transitions into narrower, shared streets to provide access to the lots.”

As the highlands continue to bustle with development of plots in various forms, city Environmental Planner Peter Rosen said the Ichijo plat is continuing along the same line as others.

“I wouldn’t say there’s anything out of the ordinary about this,” Rosen said. “Focusing on single-family detached, the plot allowed 60 houses and Ichijo is proposing 36.”

He stressed the planning department’s continued emphasis on minimizing impervious terrain in new developments as well as a focus on adding to the neighborhood vision.

The majority of concerns raised by the few citizens who attended the meeting centered on the placement of the open space within the development plans. The transfer of development rights from the county stipulates that there be an open, shared recreation space for each of the developed parcels. In its plans, Ichijo, the same company responsible for constructing the highlands landmark zHome, has the open space situated along the border of the western side of the plot, allowing some potential residential spaces to have greater access than others. It differs from other residentially planned spaces in the highlands, where shared recreation spots are centered.

“The concern was that space is on the edge of the property,” Rosen said. “The commission is very concerned about making this a useful space within the development.”

In answer to the concerns, he pointed to the proximity of the shared space to unbuildable land beyond the parcel. By connecting the land to the open area over the boundary, Rosen said that it would add to the overall recreational value.

The next stage in the verification of the developmental plan will be a Urban Village Development Commission public hearing at 7 p.m. April 2 in the Council Chambers at City Hall South, 135 E. Sunset Way.

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