Talus trees are still standing for now

August 19, 2014

A tussle over trees in Talus continues to take its toll.

After six homeowners applied to the Talus Residential Association to remove 19 trees in a communal area this past spring, a groundswell of protest began aiming to protect the landscape. The homeowner applicants claimed that the trees blocked views offered by the development’s place on Cougar Mountain.

“We had views of Lake Sammamish, downtown Issaquah and the Cascades,” Henry Farber, one of the initial applicants and the attorney representing them, said. “That was part of the interest in buying these houses for all six of us. In the last eight years, all these trees have grown over.”

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Explore hidden trails of Tiger Mountain on July 19 hike

July 1, 2014

Mountains to Sound Greenway invites you to hike the hidden trails of Tiger Mountain, traversing 9 miles from Issaquah to Preston, where the adventure concludes with a barbecue.

“The bulk of the hike is on Tiger Mountain Trail, but part of it is a guided experience through a network of trails,” said Margaret Ullman-Hess, communications and development manager for Mountains to Sound Greenway. “We worked with Green Trail Map to make a custom map for this trip, creating a journey through Tiger Mountain you may not be able to discover on your own.”

Hikers will park their cars in Preston and take a shuttle to the Harvey Manning statue in Issaquah, where Mayor Fred Butler will welcome the adventurers.

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Fred Butler enters race for Issaquah mayor

January 22, 2013

Fred Butler, a City Council stalwart for 13 years and a voice in important debates about the future of Issaquah, entered the race for mayor Jan. 17.

Fred Butler

Fred Butler

The contest could hinge on the vision for the decades ahead, as city leaders seek to position Issaquah for redevelopment and attract more jobs to the community.

Butler, 72, served on the council at major junctures in recent history, as members debated the defunct Southeast Bypass road link, how to preserve forested Park Pointe on Tiger Mountain and, late last year, a 30-year redevelopment blueprint called the Central Issaquah Plan.

“We are in the process of evolving from a small town to a small city, moving from suburban to urban,” he said in a Jan 17 interview. “Because I’ve been involved in a lot of the planning and the development of the urban villages and the Central Issaquah Plan, I believe I’m in a pretty good position to help implement the direction that we are going in.”

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Fred Butler launches campaign for Issaquah mayor

January 17, 2013

NEW — 6 p.m. Jan. 17, 2013

Fred Butler, a City Council stalwart for 13 years and a voice in important debates about the future of Issaquah, entered the race for mayor Thursday.

Fred Butler

Fred Butler

The contest could hinge on the vision for the decades ahead, as city leaders seek to position Issaquah for redevelopment and attract more jobs to the community.

Butler, 72, served on the council at major junctures in recent history, as members debated the defunct Southeast Bypass road link, how to preserve forested Park Pointe on Tiger Mountain, and late last year, a 30-year redevelopment blueprint called the Central Issaquah Plan.

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Event honors late environmentalists Ruth Kees, Maureen McCarry

November 6, 2012

Environmentalist Ruth Kees and Issaquah City Councilwoman Maureen McCarry campaigned hard to preserve forested Park Pointe, and both community leaders left legacies dedicated to the slice of Tiger Mountain.

Leaders at the nonprofit Issaquah Environmental Council plan to honor the late Kees and McCarry on Nov. 11, in a public event to clear invasive plants and add native species to Park Pointe, a 101-acre tract near Issaquah High School.

Barbara Shelton, Issaquah Environmental Council secretary, said the planting event is designed to honor Kees and McCarry, and to encourage residents to explore the public land at Park Pointe.

Kees served as a longtime advocate for efforts to preserve open space and protect the Issaquah Creek watershed.

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Offer input on Park Pointe trail proposal

August 21, 2012

Citizens can offer input about trails on a Tiger Mountain tract called Park Pointe, a section of forest set aside for conservation and recreation last year.

Issaquah Parks & Recreation Department staffers created a draft trail plan for Park Pointe — a site encompassing 101 acres near Issaquah High School.

The public can comment on the proposal to the Park Board at 7 p.m. Aug. 27. The board meets at the Issaquah Trails House, 110 Bush St. Read the draft trail plan for Park Pointe at http://bit.ly/LSmlum.

Once the Park Board listens to public comment, members intend to develop a recommendation for Mayor Ava Frisinger and city Parks & Recreation Director Anne McGill. Frisinger and McGill then intend to finalize a plan for the site.

King County transfer of development rights program to conserve rural land

August 14, 2012

King County and Seattle leaders unveiled a land-use program July 24 similar to the successful Issaquah program used to conserve the Park Pointe site on Tiger Mountain.

King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn said the program is meant to improve infrastructure in Seattle and preserve 25,000 acres of forests and farmland in rural areas.

The Landscape Conservation and Local Infrastructure Program is the result of collaboration among the city and county, and the nonprofit organization Forterra. The program enables cities to access a portion of King County’s property tax increment resulting from development if a certain percentage of development results from the use of transferable development rights, or TDRs.

The program is similar to the transfer of development rights used by Issaquah officials to prevent development on forested Park Pointe, a slice of Tiger Mountain near Issaquah High School.

Under the agreement approved in March 2011, city leaders steered construction from Park Pointe to the Issaquah Highlands instead, and, as a result, preserved more than 140 acres in the process.

Park Pointe trail plan needs public input

August 7, 2012

City leaders have put out a call for additional citizen input about trails on a Tiger Mountain tract called Park Pointe, a section of forest long considered for development but set aside for conservation and recreation last year.

Issaquah Parks & Recreation Department staffers created a draft trail plan for Park Pointe — a site encompassing 101 acres near Issaquah High School.

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Off the Press

July 24, 2012

Greg Farrar
Press photographer

There are many measures that can be used to determine a life well lived. How many buildings are named in one’s honor, how much airtime on television is given to broadcasting a memorial service, the total lifetime amount of one’s charitable giving and others.

One measurement in particular is hard to define, because it requires generations of observation not capable in one lifetime. But let me propose a question. How might Issaquah have looked two or three generations from now if Maureen McCarry had not voted against the Southeast Bypass, and had not chaired the planning and growth committee that secured the Park Pointe agreement?

With a little imagination, picture a future 60 years out, with a four-lane bypass and highway to state Route 18, and the big residential development on Tiger Mountain above Issaquah High School.

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City seeks input on Tiger Mountain’s Park Pointe trails

July 19, 2012

NEW — 10 a.m. July 19, 2012

City leaders put out a call Wednesday for citizen input about trails on a Tiger Mountain tract called Park Pointe, a section of forest long considered for development but set aside for conservation and recreation last year.

Issaquah Parks & Recreation Department staffers created a draft trail plan for Park Pointe — a site encompassing about 100 acres near Issaquah High School.

The city acquired the land in a complex transfer of development rights, and the agreement included stipulations about land use. Though low-impact recreational use is OK, for instance, public access cannot conflict with conservation.

The public can offer comments on the draft trail plan July 23 as the advisory board discusses Park Pointe. The board meets at 7 p.m. in the Eagle Room at Issaquah City Hall, 130 E. Sunset Way.

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