Your New Transfer Station Layout

On Monday the new transfer station layout was settled on by the stakeholder group. While the design requires a rezone and moves operations closer to residential, if done correctly the new design can be an asset to the community. The “Concept C” design is shown here, with the outline of the current transfer station in red (click the picture to zoom it):

The numbered circles in the picture correspond to these Wallingford Community Council feedback points:

  1. The TS will be stacked over the tractor trailer yard to maximize TS setbacks to residential; the yard will be enclosed. Equipment, such as mechanical equipment, will not be located on the top of either the RR or TS buildings; solar panels may be located on the TS. We would also like to see an Education and Observation component integrated so the public and school field trips can observe the operations of the station and learn about the city’s efforts towards sustainability.
  2. The roof of the underground parking area must be accessible to the public and designed as part of a public park; the RR roof must be designed and maintained as a green roof, the north wall of the RR building should extend no more than 8-10’ above grade, and noise emissions from the RR building should be minimized.
  3. A public park will be developed and maintained at the Carr Place Parking lot.  The design and primary uses of the park should be determined in consultation with a Stakeholder Group and immediate neighbors.
  4. Conditional on SDOT approval, the WCC asks that a 4 way stop and pedestrian crosswalk be installed at N 35th street and Woodlawn. This will help calm traffic around the 2 sections of the new park.
  5. Public green spaces that are marked as community amenities in the concepts will be developed and maintained; these spaces should promote a quiet and pleasant pedestrian experience along N. 35th Street and Woodlawn Avenue N.
  6. Traffic circles will be installed along N 36th Street at Interlake and Woodlawn.
  7. A highlighted crosswalk, warning light and curb bulbs be installed at N 34th Street and Woodlawn.

Additionally, the WCC asks for these assurances:

  • Transfer Station (TS) and Reuse and Recycling (RR) building footprints and setbacks will conform to those specified in the selected concept, with setbacks to residential zones maximized.
  • The height of the new building(s) will not exceed the height of existing buildings on the site and will conform to the heights noted in each concept, unless lower heights are deemed feasible.
  • The buildings and their uses will not be expanded or extended on the existing IB and C2 properties in the future without providing additional environmental review and impact assessment.
  • City and state code requirements and regulations placed on the existing IB and C2 parcels will run with the land, and be considered a minimum baseline for impact assessment, except where future zoning and environmental code regulations apply more stringent code requirements.
  • SPU will limit allowable noise emissions from buildings and roadways developed on the existing C2 property to those allowed in the current commercial zone and will make every effort to abate TS & RR noise.
  • SPU will provide on-going security, traffic and environmental monitoring and publish results to the public at least once each year. This monitoring should begin prior to the new transfer station being built, so as to establish a baseline for comparison. We are not prescribing the monitoring regimen – we ask that you come to the WCC or hold an open meeting where a proposed regimen can be reviewed.
  • Station operating hours will not exceed current operating hours except in the case of a major disaster.
  • We ask SPU to pursue changes to the existing zoning through a contract rezone. We have weighed the pros and cons of both a text amendment and a contract rezone and believe that the contract rezone offers the greatest protection for the community and the environment as the process moves forward.

Please give us your feedback on this design and the WCC feedback to it in the comments. More to come as we learn the details!

  1. Mark said,

    While other regions surrounding the lake get multi-billion dollar improvements to make the area nicer (SLU gets a new park, and development, UW gets a light rail) Wallingford gets a dump that encroaches into the neighborhood even more. This is a poor use of prime land and provides no restriction or goals to the amount of trash and recycling serviced here.

    This “stakeholders” group obviously does not represent the interests of the landowners that live nearby. I sat in the Wallingford Community Council meeting last week and they unanimously preferred the other option. The stakeholder group has failed to listen to the voices of the residents. Shame on you all.

    Wed, May 18 at 11:21 am
  2. Eric said,

    On a strict monetary equity basis Wallingford gives a lot more than it gets, but major redevelopment projects are a 2 edged sword. Typically getting a lot of money has meant accepting density doubling and tripling. While we’d like more equity from the city, I don’t know that we want the SLU or Northgate treatment.

    The stakeholders are people that live nearby to the dump and 3 are associated with the Community Council. They’ve put in countless hours and deserve our deep appreciation for the work they do, all free of charge. While we discussed a preference for option B at the last meeting, option C is workable with changes. Option A and several previous options were not workable and SPU has honored our requests in not pursuing them.

    In particular, note that in option C the recycling station has a green roof that should be opened up as a park and that will pair with the Carr place pocket park. It’s true it’s location means it’s not desirable for many things, but if you look at the layout it’s a pretty big stretch of green and will afford nice views. Please let us know if you see particular needs in the design that our current thinking does not address.

    Wed, May 18 at 12:29 pm
  3. Brooke said,

    Disclosures first: I have not paid that much attention to this process, and I rent but do not own a home very close to this location. I do not claim to know very much about this design and the issues around it, but I do like the idea of the park, the green roof, the stop signs on 35th St., and the traffic circles on 36th St. These roads are very busy (even tiny little 36th St) so anything to slow traffic and eliminate use as a thoroughfare is greatly appreciated. And I am pro any green space and hope that there will be some trees, especially since so many have come down in the neighborhood this past year.

    Wed, May 18 at 3:04 pm
  4. Eric said,

    Thanks Brooke! I like the focus on trees. The space next to the dump may be too close to operations for things like a playground or p-patch, but a nature walk stretching clear down the block could work well.

    Wed, May 18 at 9:07 pm
  5. Barry Pollack said,

    Any idea when construction would start and how long it will last?

    Wed, May 18 at 9:41 pm
  6. Eric said,

    Good question. There will be a design build contract going out plus there will be a rezone process. Rough dates for actual stuff happening are demolition next spring and construction completion by 2014. I asked for a more authoritative schedule but I haven’t heard back yet.

    Thu, May 19 at 12:40 pm
  7. Brian said,

    I’d really love to see Carr place be developed in an intelligent way instead of turned into another small park. Gasworks is only a couple of blocks away from this location, so there is no shortage of park space in the neighborhood already. The Carr Place lot is directly on a bus line and close to the growing south Wallingford commercial district, so it’s a great place to add density. I have in mind something along the lines of the block of buildings at 45th and Wallingford: a couple of stories with storefront space below and residential above.

    Thu, May 19 at 3:19 pm
  8. Eric said,

    The reason Carr place makes sense as a park is that there’s no playground or p-patches near to the Carr place location. Gasworks is a regional park focused on open space. The parks department will conduct an open process for determining best use, with near neighbors mostly deciding what that is. If you’re a near neighbor you’ll of course be welcome to make the case for “surplus the lot and turn it into condos” :)

    Thu, May 19 at 4:02 pm
  9. DOUG. said,

    Parks are good, but picnicking at the dump seems unlikely to me. Also, I’d love to see a bike lane on 34th going eastbound. Currently there’s a sharrow, but uphill sharrows aren’t ideal.

    Thu, May 19 at 6:44 pm
  10. Eric said,

    The idea is that the corner of the dump at woodlawn and 35th (#2 above) will be buffer park land- that’s where the trees or nature area would likely go. As you can see in the diagram it’s a very large buffer space, and it should be enough to shield the Carr place lot (#3 above) so it can act as a real park, with a P-Patch or playground.

    Thu, May 19 at 8:05 pm
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