Light rail will arrive in Overlake in 2023 and Downtown in 2024. I want to make sure we take full advantage of the mobility and lifestyle changes associated with light rail. My deep understanding of transportation and mobility issues will help Redmond capitalize on this transformational project by creating vibrant new urban centers near the light rail stations, while preserving our single family neighborhoods. By focusing development and growth near transit centers, we can reduce traffic congestion and improve housing choices and affordability.
Housing is one of the biggest challenges facing the entire region, and I have worked diligently to create solutions, ensuring that Redmond continues to set the standard for inclusionary housing. A mixture of single family homes and apartments for a variety of ages, life stages, and incomes, is critical to a healthy community. I believe that we can uphold the vitality of our residential neighborhoods while accommodating multi-generational living, through creative options such as Accessory Dwelling Units. I also see great opportunities in the area of workforce housing, to ensure that Redmond’s housing choices are attainable for all who work in our town, from high tech entrepreneurs to school teachers, from engineers to mechanics. The diversity of a community is enriched when a variety of people live, work, play and learn within its borders.
A strong City has a mixture of large and small businesses. I advocated for Redmond to lead the region in preserving affordable business/commercial space as a condition for approving the Seritage Master Plan. The developers agreed to hold available commercial space for local businesses being displaced by the construction. The City’s Planning Department has used this as a blueprint for future development and is in the process of codifying the requirement.
I believe that our environment is one of our strongest assets as a community. Redmond has a goal to increase our tree canopy to 40% and in the city’s 2019-2020 budget I supported adding an extra two acres over the planned coverage. I have also advocated on behalf of individual property owners who can help to contribute to growing our tree canopy. I would like to create an Arbor Day celebration where the entire community plants a tree. Further, I was a fervent supporter of Redmond’s new Downtown Park, which set aside prime land in our oldest neighborhood for open space and the enjoyment of residents living in Downtown and beyond.
A healthy City is responsive to the priorities of the community, while living within its means. As a tenured Councilmember, I have sought to ensure that the City is fiscally prudent and if additional revenue is called for, it is fully justified and used for a priority shared by our residents. I led the City Council through the 2019-2020 budget review with a goal of ensuring that all participants were encouraged to express their thoughts and explore ideas, while maintaining Redmond’s strong bond rating.