Saturday, June 09, 2007

Save the Trees at Upper Ridge Road

My name is Judy Lowell and I have lived in South Everett for over 30 years
at 7915 Upper Ridge Road, Everett, WA 98203. I am developing my two acres
of land which is one of the few remaining undeveloped sites in the
neighborhood to build six “green” homes, Upper Ridge Cottages, using Low
Impact techniques and I need your help.

The City of Everett codes say that the road must be wider and have on street
parking to support the six new homes. We feel, and the neighborhood
petition with over 50 signatures supports our contention that the street
should not be widened and that putting an improved sidewalk of pervious
material behind the trees and removing the existing non-pervious asphalt
that cover the roots of the trees will be an enhancement and add to the
lives of the trees. We have met on numerous occasions with the City of
Everett, specifically Don Wood, Michael Brick, Ryan Sass, and Gordon Witcher
to no avail, “the code is the code”.

It is our contention that irregular street widths encourage slower driving
and traffic safety statistics argue that 30’ wide street is safer then a 36’
road. Removal of our 70 feet locust trees will destroy the visual beauty of
the property and its appeal to the community. Tearing out the 50 year old
trees compromises the storm water hydrology that naturally drains into our
wetlands. We are providing each home a private garage and an additional
parking spot off street as well as 1 more guest parking spot for a total of
13 parking places. We feel the existing 5 to 6 on-street parking spots on
the west of Upper Ridge Road (which are rarely used) are more then adequate
to offset the proposed 5 to 6 additional on-street parking the 36 foot
proposed street will provide.

We have presented our dilemma to the Everett Tree Committee on April 19th.
They applauded our efforts to keep the trees and maintain the hydrology that
is currently on the site which drains into the wetlands.

Chuck, my partner, presented at the Snohomish County Sustainable Task Force
on May 11th to solicit support to keep the street and trees as they are. The
group was extremely interested in our project and agreed to write a letter
of support and to testify in front of the City Council Hearing that we
should be allowed to keep the trees and to keep the street narrow

The Everett 2005 - Comprehensive Plan- Transportation Element, Chapter 5

“Everett's approach is to support a planning strategy that will shape travel
behavior to match its vision, rather than have travel behavior shape the

I would like to invite you to visit my home, walk the property with me and
discuss how we can best make this project a success for our neighborhood and
the City of Everett. I am asking for your support and expertise to
encourage the City of Everett to do the right thing for the community and
allow us to keep the current street width and add a pervious surface
sidewalk which will curve behind the trees.

We plan to submit our site plan to the City of Everett in the next week or
so and are prepared to challenge the city engineering recommendations
regarding the widening of the street and removal of the trees.

Upper Ridge Cottages will be the first clustered development in the City of
Everett in an R-1 zoned neighborhood. The Public Hearing will be with the
Everett City Council sometime in late July 2007.

Upper Ridge Cottages - “An Environmentally Friendly Community”

Thanks for your consideration

Judy Lowell, Owner
7915 Upper Ridge Road,
Everett, WA 98203

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