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Friday Harbor Town Council: Affordable housing proposed on Tucker Avenue; new ADU regulations discussed

LWVSJ Observer Corps* summary of Friday Harbor Town Council's March 2, 2023 regular meeting:

Farhad Ghatan presented a proposal to build workforce housing on part of a Tucker Avenue lot once its use in an upcoming construction project is complete, in an estimated two years. The project would use ¼ to ½ of the existing lot and provide 18-36 of low-income housing units. The town would retain ownership with a long lease to the developer. The Council was interested but noted the property would need to go out for a public request for quotes or proposals.

The Mayor will contact the owner of the former Herb’s Tavern property about their plans, and if there is an opportunity for the town to collaborate to improve the aesthetic value of the highly visible corner pending redevelopment.

The Planning Department detailed elements of an amended Detached Accessory Dwelling Unit Ordinance, requiring units to match the style of the main home, provide parking space, and reduced connection fees for units with an affordability covenant. The Commission recommended against requiring that DADU’s be allowed only on properties occupied by the owner, as half of potentially eligible lots are currently long-term rentals, thus reducing the number of potential new units. The Council preferred to have a such a requirement.

Council set a public hearing for April 6 on vacating a right-away on a property on Martin St.

Public works hopes to report progress on the delayed Water System Plan by next Council meeting. They are replacing equipment at Pump Station 4 to extend its life for 10 years.

Additional elements for the Nash Street project beyond the existing plan would not be covered by the grant so the Town would need to fund them; they will proceed with the existing plan.

The bids are coming in for the Wastewater Treatment Contract and the Council will need a special meeting near March 29 to award the contract by the end of the month.

The Administrator reported: 

Town contacted Rock Island about internet outages

Town has closed on interim financing for the Wastewater Treatment Plant

The administrator is exploring the possibility of siting solar arrays on closed landfill

Spring Clean-up services will be March 27-31 for residents.

*The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan organization encourages informed participation in government. The Observer Corps attends and takes notes at government meetings to expand public understanding of public policy and decisions. The notes do not necessarily reflect the views of the League or its members.

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