Flooding on 120th Avenue Northeast in Bothell has been a major concern for city officials and residents alike for several years.
At the Nov. 19 council meeting, Bothell councilmembers unanimously approved an agreement that aims to prevent future flooding in the affected area. Councilmember Jeanne Zornes was absent from the meeting.
Winters on 120th Avenue Northeast have typically seen flooding as a result of interference of the city’s stormwater drainage system by the Parr Creek channel. Most of the channel is located in an adjacent private property.
According to the meeting agenda item, the city learned upon inspecting the creek that it contained a heavy amount of vegetation and sediment. This prevented stormwater from efficiently transferring.
Between 2014 and 2017, the city unsuccessfully endeavored to collaborate with the owner of the creek, SCG North Creek Place LLC (SCG), to maintain both the channel and stormwater system.
When this fell through, the city issued a notice of violation against SCG. This decision was appealed by the latter party first to the city’s hearing examiner, then the King County Superior Court after the hearing examiner upheld the notice.
In the spring and summer of this year, the city of Bothell and SCG eventually negotiated a settlement agreement. The agreement calls for the city’s recoupment of prosecution costs. It also entails SCG agreeing to restore Parr Creek before the 2020 fish window ends, to grant the city an access easement that allows Bothell officials to inspect and maintain the private section of the property and to go into a maintenance covenant, which is a document that outlines upkeep.
The decision at the Nov. 19 meeting authorizes the city manager to officially move into the aforementioned agreement, as well as finish any outstanding litigation with the SCG. Ultimately, the agreement seeks to restore the channel to ward off flooding in the future.
“This is a really momentous day,” deputy mayor Davina Duerr said. “This is a problem we’ve been dealing with for many seasons…it’s been a long time coming.”