Public invited to neighborhood roundtable meetings for ‘Reimagining Neighborhoods and Streets’ project

The public is invited to attend roundtable meeting in their neighborhood to discuss the City of Edmonds’ Reimagining Neighborhoods and Streets project.

During the launch of the project May 24, Development Services Director Susan McLaughlin said the goal is to look at creative ways that Edmonds can use its public spaces — in particular its streets, sidewalks, alleys and parking stalls — for a range of activities. You can view the recording of the presentation here.

There will be six roundtable meetings taking place in different neighborhoods: Perrinville/Seaview, Firdale, Five Corners, Downtown/Edmonds Bowl, Westgate and Highway 99/Lake Ballinger.

The first three neighborhood roundtables are scheduled as follows:

Five Corners Neighborhood Roundtable

When: Wednesday, June 22 at 6 p.m.

Where: Caffe Ladro, 8403 Main St.

Downtown/Edmonds Bowl Neighborhood Roundtable

When: Thursday, June 23 at 6 p.m.

Where: Edmonds Waterfront Center, 220 Railroad Ave.

Firdale Neighborhood Roundtable

When: Thursday, July 7 at 6 p.m.

Where: Hickman Park, 23700 104th Ave. W.

Dates will be announced soon for roundtable meetings in the Perrinville/Seaview, Westgate and Highway 99 neighborhoods.

According to a city press release, during the in-person meetings residents will have the opportunity to talk specifically about public space opportunities in their neighborhoods, to share their thoughts on how street space could be adapted to support community cohesion and economic development. Some activation ideas to consider include temporary art installations, neighborhood street festivals, outdoor movies, and more.

“It has become clear that our residents enjoy innovative ideas that create more vibrant and connected communities,” McLaughlin said. “One way we can do this is through ‘street activation strategies’ which utilize street space in different ways to create people places such as outdoor dining, open air markets, play streets – to enhance our neighborhoods. We look forward to these discussions and gathering ideas from the public.”

For more information about the project and to receive updates, visit


  1. Per MRSC:

    1. Washington cases have observed that the primary purpose of a right-of-way is public travel. However, municipalities may authorize other incidental uses of rights-of-way, including private uses, which do not unreasonably interfere with public travel.
    2. It is a common misconception that rights-of-way are owned by local government. In fact, the general rule is that city or county rights-of-way are easements for public travel and other secondary street purposes (such as utilities).

    Most of our streets and alleys have two parties with rights and responsibilities. One party is the fee title owner. I’ve emailed city officials for years about use rights, such as the following:

    In Nystrand v. O’Malley, the Washington Supreme Court held an abutting landowner may use the portion of an unopened street easement to which he or she holds fee title in any manner not inconsistent with the easement.

    Street easements are typically 6o feet wide. Alley easements are typically 15 feet wide.

    Who has maintenance responsibilities for the land subject to a street or alley easement?

    I don’t think I have ever seen the City require the fee title owner to maintain, repair and reconstruct the paved area of a street that cars, buses, bikes, etc. use for ingress/egress. However, our city laws (Chapter 9.20 ECC) require the following:

    -It shall be the responsibility and duty of the abutting property owner to maintain, repair and reconstruct sidewalks adjacent thereof…

    -It shall be the responsibility of the abutting property owner to maintain, repair and reconstruct adjacent planting strips in an attractive and safe manner, while continuing to provide stormwater management as required.

    -It shall be the responsibility and duty of the abutting property owner to maintain, repair and reconstruct adjacent transition strips in an attractive and safe manner, free of vegetation which tends to impair the utilization of the right-of-way for public purposes.

    If we reimagine our streets, who is going to be responsible for maintenance of the portions of streets and alleys that are reimagined?

    Will all reimagining respect the PRIMARY purpose of rights-of-way, which is public travel?

  2. What we really need to reimagine in this town is how we conduct Edmonds City Government from the ground up. We need to go to a City Manager system that answers to a City Council elected out of neighborhoods or districts with a real system of Representatives obligated to respond to a specific group of town residents and business owners who reside (with a real address) where THEIR Council person resides. And, yes, I’m aware you would still need to have good people running for elected office with the right motivations and this won’t be a perfect system either. I merely suggest it would be a much better system, that might at least quit inventing problems and then solving them on OUR dimes. Since I’m in the supposedly over-represented group who’s opinions must be marginalized, I’ll skip my NH meeting and just go with this as my meeting comment. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Thank You.

  3. Ken and Clint I agree with you both.
    I have a problem with potentially paying people to be on committees, this can lead to potential problems .
    If you care about your neighborhood you should be more than happy to serve.

  4. Some of don’t want to “reimagine” Edmonds – we love Edmonds just the way it is. Also, some of us wish the City would “reimagine” the City’s budget, then cut waste, and finally give us a tax cut – because the economy is very very sick right now.

  5. Imagine potholes fixed, roads repaved, new & repaired sidewalks.
    Spend time and energy prioritizing the tough things first.

  6. It is always good to engage various areas of Edmonds in meaningful discussion. These sessions will help gather the concerns and wants and needs of the areas planned for sessions. First up is Five Corners. The Edmonds Economic Development Commission and the City commissioned a great study done by University of Washington (project work and low cost!).

    From the study overview:
    “The City of Edmonds has been working with a team of faculty and students from the University of Washington’s College of Built Environment and Green Futures Lab to create plans for expanding the role of its neighborhood centers as more active and vital parts of the community. The first two neighborhood commercial areas to be addressed are Westgate and Five Corners.”

    The link below has the full study. It is based on several things but among the work is the citizen engagement. It was very complete. It can serve as a starting point for this work.

    Five Corners / Westgate Neighborhood Studies – City of Edmonds, WA (

    Not sure if and when the city plans to do a citizen engagement for Westgate, but the study already done can be helpful.

    The EDC has been engaged in several useful plans and studies and they are posted on this site:

    Economic Development Commission – City of Edmonds, WA (

    Key is the work that engaged more than 2500 citizen encounters is the Strategic Action Plan. It is posted at the link above. That “Vision” was the basis of many of our city’s projects over the 10+ years.

    We are currently in the process of updating what may be the most important work the city does: The Comprehensive Plan. Many individual parts find their way to the CP and we as a community should become very engaged with the CP update! Council will get their first look at the new Waterfront Study that will have significant implication for our future. All citizens should review that WF plan!

    These engagement sessions could and should lead to a more disciplined representation from the 7 zones council created for the Housing Study. Get Engaged!

  7. I just learned from a citizen that attended a meeting they are asking race and age on the form. Also disturbing is they are not vetting for edmonds residents!!! Anyone could be called in on this sham!!

  8. As in Laura Johnson’s reference to “our most vulnerable residents” being criminalized by the no camping ordinance. Never mind they aren’t actually “residents” if they have no address in Edmonds. How do these people have any right to do this? What gives them the right to label people as “residents” or “over or under represented” people? They must be violating some law of some kind. How do we hire a lawyer or get some sort of legal representation in this obvious government power grab and overreach?

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