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Mill Creek Hearing Examiner to consider self-storage development replacing Li'l Sprout Nursery

Aerial view of proposed development. Image courtesy of City of Mill Creek.
Aerial view of proposed development. Image courtesy of City of Mill Creek.

By Richard Van Winkle, News of Mill Creek.

October 8, 2018, update.

The following article has been updated to show that passage of the Cubes Self Storage binding site plan application requires the hearing examiner to approve a Reasonable Use Exception rather than approving a Conditional Use Permit.

The Reasonable Use Exception is required because a small portion of the development will be less than 50 feet from a Category II wetland. The City of Mill Creek’s wetlands consultant said this is allowed because this portion of the project is a low-impact stormwater retention facility.

Revised October 3, 2018, article.

The Mill Creek Hearing Examiner will conduct a public hearing at City Hall South on Wednesday evening, October 10, 2018, at 6:00 pm, to consider the Binding Site Plan application for a new Cubes Self-Storage facility, which requires a Reasonable Use Exception to the Mill Creek Municipal Code.

Public comments can be submitted in writing before the hearing, or during the hearing.

The plan shows Gramor Development's intention to demolish the existing Li’l Sprout Nursery and Garden Center located at 17414 Bothell-Everett Highway and then build a 90,000 square foot, three-story self-storage facility on the 3.6 acre parcel of land.

According to the proposed Binding Site Plan documents, construction of the storage facility will begin in spring/summer 2019 if the hearing examiner approves the plan.

The hearing examiner will consider a Reasonable Use Exception to Mill Creek Municipal Code for the new facility because it will be built too close to an existing category II wetland on the site. The approval would allow the reduction of the wetland buffer to less than 100 feet.

A small portion of the site’s low-impact stormwater retention facility will be built less than 50 feet from the category II wetland.

The reasonable use exception to the wetland buffer rule is allowed if the developer can show the size and shape of the site keeps the property owner from “deriving reasonable economic use of the subject property.”

A condition for granting the exception is that the developer must improve the site by enhancing the wetland in other areas and by improving the quality of subsequent stormwater runoff.

At the present time, some existing buildings now on the site are already too close to the wetland. The developer proposes to demolish all existing buildings and restore the wetlands buffer by planting native vegetation.

The hearing will be held in the Council Chambers at City Hall South, 15728 Main Street, Mill Creek, WA 98012.

Additional information is available on the City’s web site at the following link: Cubes Self-Storage.

Questions can be addressed to Associate Planner Sherrie Ringstad at 425-921-5717 or via email at sherrier@cityofmillcreek.com.

Any person desiring to present testimony may do so at the meeting, or may submit comments in writing by 5:00 pm on Wednesday, October 10, 2018, to the City Clerk prior to such meeting.

City of Mill Creek

Attention: Gina Pfister, Acting City Clerk
15728 Main Street
Mill Creek, WA 98012

Or by email to: Gina Pfister.

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