Issaquah-Hobart Road paving begins soon

May 26, 2014

NEW — 6 a.m. May 26, 2014

Roadwork on Issaquah-Hobart Road Southeast has caused traffic snarls as the county prepares to repave a section of the two-lane road.

For the past few months, crews have performed grinding on the road shoulders in preparation for repaving in June, according to the King County Department of Transportation website. The county restricted to the road to one lane.

Travelers should expect delays and use caution. King County Department of Transportation spokesman Jeff Switzer said the schedule for the repaving will depend on weather and progress, but should begin in June.

Friendly setting finds few feuds between mayoral candidates

October 22, 2013

Mayoral candidates City Council President Fred Butler and City Councilman Joe Forkner restated major themes in a largely agreeable forum Oct. 17.

In one-minute answers, both candidates stuck to their agendas, which remain fairly similar.

“When I retired form Seattle City Light as their chief engineer, I decided to devote myself to public service,” Butler said during his opening statements. “I believe in sustainability. All decisions need to take in the three legs of sustainability: people, planet and prosperity.”

By Greg Farrar Fred Butler (left) and Joe Forkner conclude their mayoral candidate forum Oct. 17 with a handshake and some laughter.

By Greg Farrar
Fred Butler (left) and Joe Forkner conclude their mayoral candidate forum Oct. 17 with a handshake and some laughter.

Forkner took the insider’s approach, citing his years of work within city government and as a board volunteer.

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Old hands hope to offer city new leadership: Fred Butler

October 8, 2013

After 13 years on the Issaquah City Council, Fred Butler says he is ready to lead.

As an avid member of the public, involved in numerous service organizations and regional groups, Butler launched his campaign for mayor early this year. When Mayor Ava Frisinger said she would not seek a fifth term, it came as no surprise that the longtime council president and Sound Transit Board member would seek the position.

Fred Butler

Fred Butler

“When I retired, I decided to devote my energies to public service,” Butler said. “I’ve been in a leadership position ever since. With this depth and breadth of experience, well, I think I’m ready.”

He worked for 27 years in the Army Corps of Engineers, giving what he believes is an exemplary level of qualification for the position of mayor.

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Traffic talks jam town hall

October 1, 2013

Traffic talks are in a jam.

To address ongoing transportation problems and lobby for a Legislature special session this fall, local and regional representatives met for a town hall Sept. 26. An overflowing crowd came to Issaquah City Hall to voice concerns about traffic and hear possible solutions.

Washington State Department of Transportation Regional Administrator Lorena Eng joined Sen. Mark Mullet, Rep. Jay Rodne, Rep. Chad Magendanz, King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert, Issaquah City Council President Fred Butler, former Bothell City Councilman Dick Paylor and North Bend Mayor Kenneth Hearing to have a discussion in an attempt to resurrect the failed Legislature funding package and hear citizen opinions.

By Peter Clark More than 70 people packed into City Hall’s Eagle Room Sept. 26 to ask questions of regional leaders on the state of transportation.

By Peter Clark
More than 70 people packed into City Hall’s Eagle Room Sept. 26 to ask questions of regional leaders on the state of transportation.

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New traffic signal, pattern for the Highlands

April 17, 2013

NEW — 1:04 p.m., Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A new traffic signal at the corner of Northeast Federal Drive and 9th Avenue Northeast was activated in the afternoon of April 17.

According to a press release from the city, the signal is being activated with the implementation of new two-way traffic configuration on Northeast Federal Drive between Ninth Avenue Northeast and Highlands Drive Northeast.

Permanent signage, as well as temporary traffic revision signs, has been installed to alert motorist to the new configuration.

State accepts comments on Interstate 90 tolling proposal

January 29, 2013

The state Department of Transportation is evaluating potential impacts of tolling Interstate 90, and the public can comment on the proposal.

The agency is considering a proposal to toll the highway on the seven-mile stretch between Interstate 5 in Seattle and Interstate 405 in Bellevue.

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Public can comment on Interstate 90 tolling proposal

January 28, 2013

NEW — 2 p.m. Jan. 28, 2013

The state Department of Transportation is evaluating potential impacts of tolling Interstate 90, and the public can comment on the proposal.

The agency is considering a proposal to toll the highway on the seven-mile stretch between Interstate 5 in Seattle and Interstate 405 in Bellevue.

The state is at work on a $4.1 billion project to replace the 49-year-old floating state Route 520 bridge across Lake Washington and overhaul the 12.8-mile corridor between I-5 in Seattle and state Route 202 in Redmond.

The floating bridge is scheduled to open in traffic by early 2015.

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Legislators’ priorities reflect education, transportation needs

January 15, 2013

Lawmakers confronted a familiar scenario as the Legislature convened Jan. 14 — a budget shortfall, opposing pressures to preserve essential services and rein in government spending, and a court mandate to spend more money on education.

Mark Mullet

Mark Mullet

Chad Magendanz

Chad Magendanz

Observers expect education and transportation to rank as the dominant issues in the 105-day session. The state faces a $900 million budget shortfall for 2013-15 and, in the meantime, faces a court order to increase education funding by 2018.

In addition to the statewide issues on legislators’ docket, a lobbyist hired by city leaders to represent Issaquah is in search of support for local projects, including dollars to upgrade transportation infrastructure and Lake Sammamish State Park.

Issaquah is also focused on securing state dollars for a transportation improvement district in North Issaquah near Costco headquarters and high-traffic retail centers.

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State hosts meetings on Interstate 90 tolling proposal

January 15, 2013

The state Department of Transportation is evaluating potential impacts of tolling Interstate 90, and the public can learn more about the proposal at a series of meetings on the Eastside and in Seattle.

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Planners steer more than $3 million to local road projects

January 15, 2013

Issaquah-area road projects received a green light to proceed — and more than $3 million — after planners approved a regional transportation program.

Puget Sound Regional Council leaders recommended funding for projects on Southeast May Valley Road, Issaquah-Hobart Road Southeast, West Lake Sammamish Parkway Southeast and 228th Avenue Southeast on the Sammamish Plateau.

The lineup includes projects just outside Issaquah city limits, but none inside the city.

Some dollars for the projects come from $440 million in federal funds distributed by the planning authority for King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish counties. State gas tax revenue and local funds then cover the remaining project costs.

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