Blaine City Council to vote on survey contract, public hearing on rezone

Published on Mon, Jan 23, 2012 by Jeremy Schwartz

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A contract with an engineering firm to survey private property in east Blaine and an ordinance rezoning land near the truck route are on the Blaine City Council meeting agenda for tonight, January 23.

City council will decide whether or not to approve a $54,602 contract with Bellingham-based Wilson Engineering to perform survey work and study of wetlands on two parcels of private property in east Blaine between Harvey Road and the proposed Grandis Pond development (click here for a PDF of the contract). As I reported here, the land’s owners, the Robert D. Martin Family Company, recently granted the city permission to access the land.

City officials want to study the land to see if installing a 30-foot-wide, 2,700-foot-long utility corridor to feed future development in east Blaine would be feasible. City officials initially sought to acquire the land via eminent domain after access negotiations with the landowners failed, but city council voted to delay acquisition until the land could be studied further.

City council will also consider an ordinance rezoning a few select swaths of land in the area surrounding 14th Street, just east of the truck route and south of D Street. As I reported here, the land in question is currently zoned for light manufacturing or commercial use, but Blaine planning staff say this designation no longer makes sense given the inability to access the land via the truck route. Planning staff are recommending the land’s zoning be changed to reflect the area’s primarily residential surroundings and a different commercial zoning designation be added closer to the truck route.

According to the draft ordinance, city planning staff are recommending another public hearing be held on the rezoning issue so further public comment can be heard. If city council members agree to the public hearing, the rezoning ordinance would not be voted upon tonight.

Click here to see the city council’s full agenda for this evening. The city council meeting starts at 6 p.m.


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