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Cedar Stump rezone tabled

ARLINGTON — One person attended the Arlington Planning Commission’s public hearing Dec. 16. After Eric Waggoner expressed his concerns about the “Cedar Stump Comprehensive Plan Amendment and Rezone,” the planning commission said back to the drawing board,

The rezone, which is proposed by the city itself, intends to change the zoning of the area north of 188th Street along Smokey Point Boulevard, from light industrial to highway commercial and high density residential.

The proposed rezone is largely the same area that is the uplands portion of the Island Crossing annexation area. While the county had no concerns about the city’s annexing the uplands, it did try to clamp a restraining order on any development in the lowlands of the annexation.

Waggoner requested the city not change the zoning from light industrial to highway commercial because he was planning a light industrial development on the easternmost piece of property in the rezone area, at 35th Avenue and 188th Street.

“This property is too far off the I-5 corridor to be highway commercial,” said Waggoner, who invested in the property specifically to do a small light industrial park similar to one he knew of in Granite Falls.

“If you go forward with the rezone, so be it, I will just sell the property,” Waggoner said.

“I am not going to put $3 million into a project that I believe will fail.”

Waggoner suggested that light industrial can provide better jobs and highway commercial.

The city’s community development director David Kuhl said the city was moving away from light industrial because it didn’t blend well with residential. Waggoner’s portion of the rezone area lies immediately west of a residential area, already developed with low to moderate density. The area is also subject to restrictions connected to the Federal Aviation Administration due to its proximity to flightlines at the Arlington Airport, complicating the issue further.

Members of the planning commission once again suggested that the city needs to create a big- picture plan for Smokey Point Boulevard. The city was going to move forward with such a planning process early next year, Kuhl said, but the intern who was going to do the project was removed from the budget.

Planning commission chair Bruce Angell offered to form a committee and start working on a plan for Smokey Point Boulevard.

“We are willing to meet with you and get this started,” Angell told Kuhl.

“If we rezone this area highway commercial, it will be subject to big box stores and we will have no control,” Angell said. “Is light industrial really worse than highway commercial? We really need some long-range planning for Smokey Point Boulevard,” Angell said.

“We really need some design standards out there, before more big, ugly metal buildings go in,” said planning commissioner Vicki Hadley.

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