For those who have driven through Lynnwood this summer, it is impossible to miss all of the construction and change taking place. Have you wondered what is happening?
Like most Western Washington cities, Lynnwood has been growing its residential area by building new houses, townhouses, and condominiums. What sets Lynnwood apart, however, is how much the commercial base is expanding. A decade ago, a drive through Lynnwood on I-5 would show mostly old growth trees. That same drive today will reveal many new retailers, a few hotels, and innumerable new homes. It is apparent that Lynnwood is growing its tax base by allowing all kinds of construction.
The City of Lynnwood has massaged its zoning ordinances to allow many changes. If we could look into the future another ten years, that drive through Lynnwood on I-5 would reveal commercial buildings as tall as 20 stories. If we exited the freeway to visit Lynnwood, we could park in one of the many enclosed public-parking garages to visit the Pedestrian Corridor along the Promenade Street. The Promenade will offer 16- to 20-foot-wide sidewalks, benches, outdoor art, and sidewalk cafes. This may sound a little bit like parts of Kirkland, Redmond, or Bellevue to some. It does to me.
Lynnwood's "City Center Design Guidelines," published in March 2005, describes numerous changes to Lynnwood's downtown core. You may read it yourself on the city's website if you would like to see what is planned.
Let me know what you think about the future of Lynnwood.
- Will these changes create another "Bellevue?"
- How will these changes affect the cost of housing?
- The current mix of residents is 53% owners, 47% renters; will the change affect that ratio?
I look forward to reading your comments.