Mville wants to close the gap with a 700-acre annexation

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MARYSVILLE The largest morsel of raw land left on the platter of northern Snohomish County is about to be gulped by Marysville, a 687-acre chunk of land now known as the Smokey Point gap, once destined to become a NASCAR track.
The city is currently zoning the property prior to formal annexation, expected by the end of the year, according to members of the Marysville Planning Commission who heard comments from property owners at their Sept. 26 meeting.
The gap as its called refers to the fact that the swath of land bridges a gap between Arlingtons southern border south of 172nd Street NE and one of Marysvilles northern reaches near the new Strawberry Fields soccer park. The planning commission is hearing a proposed master plan which would bring the land in under a light industrial zoning, appropriate for business parks and some manufacturing uses. The pre-zoning is required by law, according to senior planner Chris Holland of the Marysville Community Development Department, who said the city has not received any letters of comments on the proposed annexation.
Barring invocation of the Boundary Review Board, which regulates these things, the annexation should be complete by March, 2007 at the latest. Holland said the annexation, which should go to the City Council in November, has been signed by nearly 70 percent of property owners, by assessed value.
Mike Beardsley probably wasnt one of those. He was one of 13 people present at the Sept. 26 meeting and said he has lived on his house on 51st Street NE since 1998 and didnt want industrial uses in his neighborhood.
This is my toe-tag house, Beardsley told the commission. Please dont put anything next to me that you wouldnt want next to your own homes.
Dennis Quinn has lived at his spread on 152nd Street NE for 31 years, and all he wanted was a clean glass of water.
The water in the valley has been really bad, Quinn said, who is on a private well. Were anxious to tap into that line you got right by my driveway.
That might not be so easy, according to commission chairman Steve Muller, who asked Holland about the need for the city to maintain adequate water pressure for fire hydrants and the like. That would likely keep Quinn thirsty for some time, Muller suggested. Holland concurred.
Marysville Chief Administrative officer Mary Swenson on Monday said the area will be a real job generator, and that the master plan will take into account the Hayho Creek that runs through the land, and the roads that dont. To fully capitalize the areas value the city will have to string together several roads, according to Arlington planners, who are working with their counterparts to the south. Thats a marked change from a decade ago when the two cities scrapped over who would annex the Smokey Point neighborhood, which ended in Arlingtons bailiwick.
Arlington Community Development Director Brad Collins said his concerns were uses compatible with other nearby businesses in the area, and the need for logical arterial connectors running both north-and-south and east-and-west. That would likely include a new 63rd Avenue connecting with 59th and 51st Streets and west of that a new 43rd Avenue, which might be named 47th as it would have to wind around a wetland on the property.
I believe the two cities area coordinating that fairly well, Collins said.
The commission also heard comments on the pre-zoning for another annexation, this the North Lakewood Annexation, 27 acres next to Carols Creek Landing, east of 25th Avenue NE. Commissioner Becky Foster said this land, which is being zoned R-8, or about eight residential units per acre, should be more like Lakewood Commons and less dense than the Navy housing at Carols Creek Landing.
Jeanine Lish has lived on the proposed annexation for 32 years and asked about how the annexation would affect her taxes, and said her family of schoolteachers feels more affinity to another nearby city.
I wish it were not Marysville; we have been Arlington for 32 years, Lish said.
The commission will meet again to hear the pre-zoning issues for both the Smokey Point and north Lakewood annexations, and then again about the actual annexation, which will go to the city council as well.

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