New Rehabilitation Proposal for Saint Edwards Seminary

Public Meeting Recap for Saint Edward August 25, 2015.

Kevin Daniels says he would 1. Save the building 2. Find an adaptive re-use. His idea is a grand lodge similar to those in national and State Parks. There would be about 200 lodging rooms. The developer would draw up the plans, estimate costs and find an interested backer.

Part of the proposal involves a land exchange. Daniels would buy the 10 acres of the McDonald land for the State Park in exchange for the 8 acres surrounding the Seminary and other buildings –to get same value. The buildings would be sold, not leased.

Such a change in status, from State Park to private commercial property, would require a long process involving: NEDA, a federal process, the State Park System (who do have the power to buy and sell land through their 2013 Real Estate Policy Update), and a zoning change by the City of Kenmore.

One of the big questions was if the Seminary Building would remain on the Historic Register and how much of the original structure would remain .It was insisted that the historic aspects would remain, following the guidelines of repurposing of Historic buildings which I felt was a broad generality. Another big unknown that has halted past potential developers is the amount of money involved, with an estimated cost of the development over $50 million. After Daniels creates plans for the Seminary building, he will have to find investors and a backer to operate the Lodge. He had no answers for questions about possible investors.

There was request for a show of hands to find out who was interested in seeing the proposal going forward. The majority of those present were interested. After the public meeting, the next step will be for the State Parks and Kevin Daniels to take their proposal before the Commission during their Sept 10 meeting in Spokane. They will request a one year extension of the Sept. deadline (which involved vacating and closing down the building) on the Seminary building. Daniels would draw up plans to repurpose the building and seek investors. State Parks would work on the legal status change.

Public comment may be made to Michael Hankinson, parks planner, at michael.hankinson@parks.wa.gov

 

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Post by Janice Gerrish

Janice Gerrish served 10 years as a board member for the Friends of St Edward State Park. She is the Treasurer. Friends of St Edward State park is a 503C3 nonprofit group.They recently upgraded their Bylaws  to reflect their added direction and purpose: A. To promote the preservation of the natural environment, the wildlife and scenic, recreational resources of the park properties. B. To provide financial and other assistance for the continued operation, repair….of the Park. C. To educate the community about the availability and benefits of the natural environment …and increase community involvement associated with the Park. 

The new Park Ranger for the State Park is Scotti Stephens, Scotti.Stephens@Parks.wa.gov

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