To the Editor — September 2015

September 2, 2015

NEW — 4:48 p.m. Sept. 2, 2015

Reject the proposed School Woods plan

I am writing this to express my opposition to the proposed plan for the School Woods.  Beyond the loss of trails, the increased residential and “cut-through” traffic through two established neighborhoods, and the violation of existing wetlands, it is a shame to have lost a potential open space and park area.

This is especially true in a city having the least park land of any in the area  (4.7 acres of park acreage per 1,000 residents in Newcastle, compared to Renton’s 12.7 acres and Bellevue’s 21.2).

Further, the proposed development shows a complete lack of imagination and respect for the land. The site plan as it stands is in the perfect image of California practice:  Flatten for building pad, drop, flatten for building pad, drop again, flatten for building pad, drop again, etc., extending over the entire site. This is a forced, high-density housing development that shows little or no sympathy and respect for existing neighborhood ambiance. Read more

Council approves speed humps for Southeast 75th Street corridor

August 6, 2015

NEW — 2:36 p.m. Aug. 6, 2015

Newcastle resident Jo Ann Pancheri often sits in her home, peering out the window, clutching her phone and waiting for the worst.

Her house sits at the intersection of Southeast 75th Street and 125th Place Southeast, a corridor where neighbors have repeatedly asked for traffic-calming measures.

Pancheri has an unobstructed view to the speeding and near-miss accidents that community members say plague the neighborhood.

“I wait every day with my phone waiting to call 911,” she told the Newcastle City Council on July 21, illustrating her fear of witnessing a major accident. Read more

Editorial — Council does the right thing on speed hump decision

August 6, 2015

NEW — 2:30 p.m. Aug. 6, 2015

Haochen Xu was just 4 years old.

He loved to read, had no trouble making friends and possessed a penchant for learning.

Haochen died June 27 at Harborview Medical Center, the day after a driver struck him as he and his mother tried to cross Newport Way Northwest in Issaquah.

Investigators say the driver was not speeding, but that is little consolation for a community that says the posted 40 mph speed limit along the road is way too high.

Changes are likely coming to the road, with Issaquah Mayor Fred Butler recommending a speed limit decrease. But this is after the worst case scenario became reality. Read more

Energize Eastside, traffic calming, dominate town hall

July 2, 2015

Speed bumps and power lines were the hot topics of conversation at the city of Newcastle’s annual town hall meeting June 16.

By Christina Corrales-Toy Deputy Mayor John Drescher (right) answers an audience question, as City Councilman Rich Crispo listens beside him.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
Deputy Mayor John Drescher (right) answers an audience question, as City Councilman Rich Crispo listens beside him.

During the meeting’s second hour, the Newcastle City Council fielded audience questions, with a sizable group of neighbors from in and around Southeast 75th Street using the time to express concerns about speeding on the street. Read more