Northwest NEWS

October 26, 1998


Times have changed

   In specific response to Mr. Gallagher's letter of Oct. 19 about phony choices and the truth. I am compelled to make a point about something he has said.
   Mr. Gallagher, who has been around the land-use process in this area for an extended period of time, wrote in reference to the Ag lands that, "The politicians will make it available for the same development that you see on the other side of Redmond's golf course and in the city of Woodinville. We will certainly have some more soccer fields, but they will be surrounded by apartments, condos and tilt-up concrete warehouses. Is that the legacy we wish to leave?"
   My initial reaction was: Long before there was a City of Woodinville, there was the lovely little Growth Management Act, which mandated urban growth, density and infill in designated urban areas.
   The greater portion of what is now official Woodinville, and the areas around Redmond that he mentions, were already designated as "urban."
   It was going to happen anyway, folks. At least Woodinville and Redmond got some say in the process. This, however, is an old argument that Steve and I have had, and of itself, who cares? We will never agree. But what really gets me in the gut is this "legacy" business.
   When I first got into the Woodinville scene, I was a homeowner who epitomized the old "BANANA" acronym, (Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything). But times have changed. A divorce turned me into one of those apartment dwellers.
   I'm still a renter, and I'd consider myself lucky if I could even remotely afford a condo in this town. And given the commute that I face every day, I really wish my employer could move into one of those "tilt-up concrete warehouses."
   Those apartments and condos are homes for people, and the "tilt-up warehouses" as you call them are places of employment.
   Sure, the Valley looks nice, and hanging on to the green has its appeal, but I don't think semi-affordable housing and workplaces that don't require an endless car ride are such lousy legacies.
   And as for a playfield for kids, would it be such a bad thing for our kids to play outside someplace safe that was local?
   I guess that when it gets right down to it, you live where you live, and I live where I live, and the view for each of us is definitely different. Webster's defines a legacy as "a bequest; a particular thing given by last will." Kind of a dead, final thing.
   To the best of my knowledge, all of the communities in our area are alive and well, and hopefully not in a mood to make monuments and mausoleums for posterity.
   I hear the rent's pretty high in them there things, and the job opportunities are zilch.
   Mark Jessup, Woodinville