Current and former members of the Woodinville City Council, the mayor and deputy mayor joined Woodin Creek Village Associates developer Doug Reiss in a ceremonial groundbreaking at what is currently the Canterbury Park retirement community on June 17.
Woodin Creek Village, a mixed-use development, will include 800 to 1,000 apartments, 50,000 square feet of commercial space and improvements to the roads, stream and trail, Reiss previously told the City Council.
Darrell and Donna Rongholt, longtime residents of Canterbury, were at the ceremony, along with a handful of the 10 homeowners still living in the community and a few who have already moved. Current residents have until August 30 to move.
The Rongholts have known since moving in 20 years ago that the property would be sold eventually. While the residents owned the homes on the property, the land beneath was rented to the homeowners, who as part of a condominium association had a contract agreeing the property would be put up for sale by 2008 so it could be developed to fulfill the city’s needs.
Darrell Rongholt is a condo association board member. Out of the 128 owners, about 30 of them tried to convince the rest of the homeowners not to sell, but Rongholt explained that the group was under obligation by contract to sell.
As homeowners vacated their properties, burglaries have increased. “In the past three weeks we’ve had 35 burglaries,” Rongholt said, adding that the remaining homeowners are concerned about their safety. Homeowners still on-site have put up signs in their windows saying “Occupied” in an effort to not have their property burglarized. Reiss is working with the remaining homeowners to ensure their safety.
Almost all the homes are going to be repurposed by four businesses that will move them to new locations, including apple orchards in central Washington where they will be used for migrant housing. In addition, the developers are salvaging as many of the trees and mature landscaping as possible to use for the finished development.