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City districts receive formal names before new signs go up

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

Do you enjoy drinking wine in Woodinville’s Tourist District? Or own a business in one of the Industrial Districts? It’s time for new names, the City Council decided at last week’s meeting, renaming several districts in the city and establishing a program for new wayfinding signs.

The Tourist District became the Hollywood District, the South Industrial District became the West Valley District and the North Industrial District became the Warehouse District.

The names the Council chose aligned with the results of a survey, which garnered 53 responses. In many cases, the new names, which will be used when the city installs district signs, are names that people and businesses are already using to describe their locations.

A project is currently out to bid to make and install new wayfinding signs in the city, replacing the existing signs, which were installed in 2004. The new wayfinding signs will be funded by $78,000 from the city’s lodging tax and will be installed in October.

There will be 16 signs throughout the city, pointing the way to commercial tourist attractions such as wineries, breweries and retail stores; cultural and historic sites such as the Woodinville Heritage Museum; and recreational amenities such as the Sammamish River Trail or parks. The signs will have a stone base, wood post and aluminum “blades” painted to look like Corten steel.

Each sign will have five blades, and businesses and nonprofit organizations can pay a $200 annual fee per blade to be listed on the sign. Under the current program, businesses paid a one-time fee of $2,000 to be listed on the signs for five years, but many of those signs have stayed up for more than 10 years, City Manager Rich Leahy said.
“That’s a heck of a deal,” Councilmember Les Rubstello said of the new program.

Since the sign blades are a form of advertising, they will act as a one-to-one replacement of the portable A-board signs that some businesses use, said Alexandra Sheeks, assistant to the city manager. Currently, most businesses are allowed to have one A-board, while businesses in the Warehouse District can have two.

The survey also gave Woodinville feedback about other changes citizens would like to see.

“A lot of people mentioned that downtown should be officially called ‘Downtown,’” Sheeks said. “Interestingly, we didn’t ask about residential neighborhoods, but we had a lot of people comment that they didn’t like the name of ‘The Wedge.’ They felt that something like ‘Wedgewood’ would be a little more appealing.”

The city “also received a number of comments that downtown streets should have names, not numbers, such as Main Street, naming them after historic Woodinville figures, or trees, or natural elements, and things like that,” Sheeks continued.

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