It’s been a week since someone set fire to a storage building and flatbed truck at Edmonds City Park, and on Tuesday night the Edmonds City Council passed an emergency ordinance to removed the burned structure from park grounds. Under the emergency designation, the work can be done immediately without needing to go out for bids.
City Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Director Carrie Hite told the council that the damaged structure in the park maintenance area poses a hazard given the large volume of traffic the city’s popular park draws. Removal of the structure could start as early as Wednesday, Hite said.
Police are treating the incident, which occurred around 1:30 a.m. on June 8, as an arson investigation but haven’t yet named any suspects.
The storage building and its contents — paper products, light bulbs and other supplies used in City of Edmonds facilities — were destroyed. The city has received an estimate of $75,000-$100,000 in damages for the shed alone, Hite said. The value of the truck — a total loss — will be assessed separately, but other park vehicles were also “severely damaged by heat,” she added, and will need to be repaired.
The city will also have to pay a $25,000 deductible on its insurance policy before receiving compensation for damages, Hite added.
As a result of the fire, the city is looking into beefing up security in the park, including installation of video cameras, said Public Works Director Phil Williams, who added the city had purchased $4,600 worth of janitorial supplies and placed them in the shed prior to the fire. A sound system the city uses for the Edmonds Kind of Fourth of July celebration was also melted, Hite noted.
The council heard reports on several other items Tuesday night, moving some of them to next week’s consent agenda. We’ll have a separate story on those actions Wednesday.