Expansion of Juanita Heights Park & Update on Chaffey PAR

Expansion of Juanita Heights Park & Update on Chaffey PAR

Dear Finn Hill Residents: This is a short update regarding two significant developments:

The City of Kirkland Approved the Acquisition of 6 Parcels to Expand Juanita Heights Park – March 19, 2013   Adding to Juanita Heights Park is important because the park is located in the midst of an endangered green belt on the eastern side of Finn Hill, which lacks protected open space. It’s vital to do everything we can to set aside properties on this side of the hill for recreational use. See Kirkland Views article.

(See the Parks Dept staff memo and map, attached.) This acquisition will expand the park’s footprint by 2/3 and provide an entry point at the end of 124th,vastly improving accessibility. The cost of the property is $666k, a portion of which will be funded from the new park levy that voters approved last year. (This will be the first allocation of acquisition funds from the levy.)

On Tuesday, March 19, the City Council considered the recommendation from the Parks Department and the Parks Board to purchase 2.16 acres of open space adjacent to Finn Hill’s Juanita Heights Park. In case you didn’t know, Juanita Heights Park sits on the southeastern brow of Finn Hill, overlooking Juanita Beach and the lake. It’s a great little park, about 3.5 acres, but is little known because the only access is via a circuitous route snaking from 124th Street to 88th Place and then to the cul de sac at the end of 89th Place.

Thank you to all who supported this acquisition of park land for our community by sending emails to  to the City Council  citycouncil@kirklandwa.gov

Update on Chaffey PAR 

  • Planning Commission recommends that the City defer action on the Chaffey PAR until Finn Hill has a neighborhood plan: At its meeting last Thursday, the Planning Commission voted unanimously to recommend to the City Council that no action be taken on the Chaffey PAR until Finn Hill has developed a neighborhood plan. The Planning Commission’s vote adopted the Planning Department’s analysis of the matter, which was consistent with FHNA’s own recommendations. The many comments that Finn Hill residents submitted on the Chaffey PAR made an impression on Commissioners, so a big thank you goes to all who took time to write in.

This matter is not finished. The Planning Commission’s recommendation will be considered by the Council on April 16, and there is certainly no guarantee that the Council will adopt the Commission’s view of the PAR. (You may recall that the Commission recommended over a year ago that no further action be taken on the Howard PAR – which affected the zoning on the lots near the fire station at Holmes Point and Juanita Drive. The Council rejected that recommendation and the zoning change was ultimately approved.) We will need to show the Council the same level of community concern that you demonstrated to the Commission. We will keep you posted as the Council meeting date draws near.

We hope post more details on these items, as well as a recap of our March 6 members’ meeting, on our website in the coming week. And don’t forget that we’re looking for volunteers to clean up the Juanita Woodlands on Saturday, March 30. You can sign up via our site: www.finnhillalliance.org. Look under the Events tab.

Scott Morris
Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance – President
(formerly Denny Creek Neighborhood Alliance)
PO Box 682, Kirkland WA 98083

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