Tahoma School District, mapping, and zoning changes main topics at Greater Maple Valley Area Council meeting
March 11, 2013 · 3:30 PM
Superintendent Mike Maryanski discussed plans for potential school sites to alleviate its ongoing capacity shortage. The district serves about 7,500 students. Maryanski specifically mentioned the unsuccessful negotiations with King County concerning 35 acres within the 156-acre Donut Hole along the south side of SR-516.Despite not reaching agreement with King County to purchase land in the Donut Hole, the district is moving ahead with plans to design a regional learning center that would include a new high school. The plan would involve collaboration with Renton Technical College, Green River Community College, and private business and industry to offer students a more abundant choice of learning opportunities. It would serve both students and the greater Maple Valley community by offering college learning opportunities locally.
The city of Maple Valley, through its sub-area plan, hopes to shed some of its bedroom community aspects by envisioning the Donut Hole as a technology sector with light industry to create jobs for local residents.
TSD owns land adjacent to Tahoma Junior High on Summit-Landsburg Road S.E. in Ravensdale. However, Maryanski indicated little desire to site a new school there, as it is not centrally located, and does not fit TSD’s goal to site a new school within the urban growth area.
Also at the meeting, Tom Carpenter, Four Creeks Unincorporated Area Council member, discussed a grant they recently received through the King County CSA program to develop mapping tools to handle various databases to better understand property, environmental, agriculture, and recreational issues. The FCUAC is working with schools, property owners, and local community organizations to develop and use mapping skills. In 2010, the FCUAC began purchasing Geographical Information Systems services from Green River Community College. All services funds are used for student scholarships and internships or for equipment purchases that benefit the FCUAC and GRCC GIS students. The FCUAC has since partnered with GRCC on the Atlas mapping program, whose purpose is to provide residents access to King County’s geographic and demographic information in an easy, reusable way. For more information go to MySpatialHome.org.
During the recently completed 2012 Update to the King County Comprehensive Plan the Area Council repeatedly voiced opposition to the proposed zoning change of Reserve Silica land in Ravensdale from Mining to Rural Residential. The Area Council voiced our opposition both orally and in writing to the King County Council, supporting the King County Executive’s proposed zoning change to Forestry, compatible with the surrounding ForestProduction District lands.
Unfortunately, during final KCCP Update deliberations the King County Council approved an amendment introduced by Reserve Silica calling for a demonstration project to be considered this year. The Area Council opposes this and considers it to be a backdoor way to obtain residential zoning of converted resource land. We also do not approve of such Urban Growth Boundary changes in off-year KCCP updates and the precedent that could beset in degrading citizen’s property rights.
The Area Council approved a letter to the King County Council specifically calling attention to our concerns with both the so-called demonstration project for reserve silica and the change in policy to allow major updates to the KCCP on an annual basis. The letter was submitted to the King County Council, as well as the King County Executive and department directors, on March 5.
Area Council meetings are held the first Monday of each month. The next meeting will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m on April 1 at the Fire Station at 231st St & SR-169.