Friends of North Kelsey plan to appeal Walmart decision
MONROE - Friends of North Kelsey plan to appeal the Walmart decision to the state Court of Appeals.
The citizens’ group will be making the announcement at a rally at noon Wednesday, March 7 at the corner of U.S. 2 and North Kelsey Street (near the Walmart site).
Diane Elliott, spokeswoman for Friends, said she hopes people come out for the rally because the fight against Walmart isn’t over.
Friends believe Snohomish County Superior Court Judge Richard Okrent was wrong in his decision backing the city’s approval of the Walmart project. Friends say the planned 155,845-square-foot supercenter fails to meet a number of the design guidelines for North Kelsey. North Kelsey was supposed to be a pedestrian-friendly shopping and community gathering development with architecture reflective of Monroe’s Northwest character.
Elliott said she believes the city’s recent decision to scrap the North Kelsey development plan may strengthen Friends’ case.
The city recently told the City Council that the vision for North Kelsey wasn’t being met and the area was shaping up to look more like a general commercial, car-centric development and suggested the city should toss out elements of the North Kelsey plan.
Friends argue the North Kelsey plan is a “critical regulatory tool,” and the city was wrong when it dismissed the guidelines in its approval of the Walmart.
“The process of government is broken and they’re not paying attention to what the citizens want,” Elliott said. “A lot of people spent an extraordinary amount of time and effort and the city spent an extraordinary amount of time, effort and money developing the North Kelsey plan.”
By STEPHANIE KOSONEN
Published March 7, 201