Developers want 7th and Gilman fast-tracked

February 4, 2014

Lennar Multifamily Investors wants to move quickly on the first redevelopment in central Issaquah.

The developer with a Seattle office submitted an official site development permit application Dec. 18. It has an interest in working with the city to construct the first large project under the Central Issaquah Plan. However, it also has an optimistic schedule.

“We’re basically just starting our review,” Project Oversight Manager Christopher Wright said. “There doesn’t seem to be any major issues.”

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Fond farewell

January 14, 2014

Ava Frisinger reflects on her 16 years as mayor

These days, Ava Frisinger, when not volunteering her time on various councils and boards, is spending a lot of catch-up time with her grandchildren. She won’t say which role is harder, being Issaquah’s longest-serving mayor or that of grandmother.

By Greg Farrar New Mayor Fred Butler (left) presents Ava Frisinger with a gift from city employees as her husband Bill Frisinger looks on.

By Greg Farrar
New Mayor Fred Butler (left) presents Ava Frisinger with a gift from city employees as her husband Bill Frisinger looks on.

“But being a grandmother is a very satisfying job, rewarding as well,” Frisinger said. “It’s neat to watch kids grow, encourage them to do what it is that they want to do.”

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Finley and Gillda have a new fishy friend at the hatchery

January 7, 2014

Finley and Gillda, the two Issaquah Salmon Hatchery mascots, turned in for the night after New Year’s Day, and slept so soundly that they were not awakened by an anonymous overnight visitor with a delivery.

If they have ever yearned for an addition to the family, that wish was being fulfilled while they dreamed.

By Greg Farrar Jane Kuechle, executive director of Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, enjoys the 5-foot salmon chainsaw art mysteriously donated in the wee hours of Jan. 2. The anonymous sculptor left it at the front entrance to the hatchery.

By Greg Farrar
Jane Kuechle, executive director of Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, enjoys the 5-foot salmon chainsaw art mysteriously donated in the wee hours of Jan. 2. The anonymous sculptor left it at the front entrance to the hatchery.

When the two steel sculptures awoke the early morning of Jan. 2, they had a new buddy, 5 feet tall, made of a wooden log, with “Issaquah” carved in its base. The obvious intention was of it being a new permanent artistic attraction for local residents and annual Salmon Days visitors to enjoy.

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Old year brought new problems

December 31, 2013

Top news stories of the year

Many new things happened in Issaquah this past year and not all of them were greeted warmly.

While most people saw new parks and a new mayor as positive changes for the city, contention rose around new technology, new development standards, new fish ladders, new plastic bag ordinances and a newly legalized drug.

Much of what happened in 2013 spells more growth for Issaquah in the years to come and even more changes ahead. The year 2014 can learn much from the lessons taught by this past year of transformation.

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City receives $600,000 grant for creek restoration

December 17, 2013

The Washington Salmon Recovery Funding Board and the Puget Sound Partnership recently awarded more than $42 million in grants to organizations in the state for projects that restore and protect salmon habitat, helping bring salmon back from the brink of extinction.

Issaquah was awarded a $600,000 grant to restore Issaquah Creek at Confluence Park.

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Issaquah Creek dam project finish pushed back to Nov. 30

November 19, 2013

By Greg Farrar Construction continues Nov. 14 on the new Issaquah Salmon Hatchery intake (right) at Issaquah Creek, above the sloping fish ladder weir system, which is complete and handling the creek flow.

By Greg Farrar
Construction continues Nov. 14 on the new Issaquah Salmon Hatchery intake (right) at Issaquah Creek, above the sloping fish ladder weir system, which is complete and handling the creek flow.

November could end before the Issaquah Creek dam project.

Originally slated for completion Sept. 15, the replacement of the old creek dam with a series of sloping weirs has fallen well off schedule. Tim Ward, project manager with Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, now says he expects completion around Nov. 30.

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King County offers new free flood app

November 5, 2013

King County has released a new King County Flood Warning app, to help safeguard people and their property by providing real-time flooding information for the Skykomish, Snoqualmie, Tolt, Raging, Cedar, Green and White rivers, and Issaquah Creek.

The first app to be developed and released by King County, the Flood Warning app provides the most-recent critical flood data from U.S. Geological Survey and National Weather Service – Northwest River Forecast Center.

Users can see current river flows, flood stage data and forecasts, plus real-time flood phases, while hydrographs make it easy to see several days of river data and forecasts.

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Gilman Square plan could add 340 residences

October 22, 2013

Contributed This architectural drawing shows the three building proposed for a redeveloped Gilman Square.

Contributed
This architectural drawing shows the three building proposed for a redeveloped Gilman Square.

A pre-application for three five-story buildings at Gilman Square could mark the first test of the Central Issaquah Plan.

Developer Lennar Multifamily Investors wishes to turn the 6.7-acre site, the home of Lombardi’s Restaurant until it shut its doors in July, into a large residential location. They entered talks with the city in September before submitting a pre-application in early October.

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Budget season opens with the mayor’s final budget

October 15, 2013

Mayor Ava Frisinger presented her final budget proposal, which includes $98.3 million in budgeted expenditures, to the City Council Oct. 7.

It includes adding a new human services manager and a police officer, increasing funding for “sustainable” efforts and $55,000 for a feasibility study into a campus to consolidate the locations of city services.

“I’m extremely proud to reflect on the last 16 years,” Frisinger told the council as she presented her budget to them. “Today, we’re planning for what’s next: a commitment to environmental protection, a strong economic base and a strong quality of life for our citizens.”

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Come out for food, fun and flair at 44th annual Salmon Days

October 1, 2013

As the salmon return, so do the thousands of people expected for this year’s Salmon Days Festival.

Oct. 5 and 6 will see coho, chinook, sockeye, kokanee and many festivalgoers make their way to the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery for a weekendlong celebration full of events, activities, food and music.

The homegrown event celebrates the return of local salmon as they make their pilgrimage from the Pacific Ocean back to the spawning grounds of Issaquah Creek and the hatchery. Approximately 180,000 people attended last year’s event, which was met with sunny, mild weather.

The Grand Parade will kick off the weekend beginning at 10 a.m. Oct. 5. It will wind its way down Front Street to the hatchery in a bright display of community spirit and appreciation of the surrounding environment.

By Greg Farrar Two Chinook salmon struggle at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery weir Sept. 26 to return upstream seeking a place to spawn in Issaquah Creek.

By Greg Farrar
Two Chinook salmon struggle at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery weir Sept. 26 to return upstream seeking a place to spawn in Issaquah Creek.

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