Kenmore city manager, Rob Karlinsey gives the State of Kenmore address to city staff and local business owners at the Inglewood Golf Club. Kailan Manandic, Bothell/Kenmore Reporter

Kenmore city manager, Rob Karlinsey gives the State of Kenmore address to city staff and local business owners at the Inglewood Golf Club. Kailan Manandic, Bothell/Kenmore Reporter

Karlinsey gives State of Kenmore address

Kenmore city manager talks upcoming projects at the annual address

Kenmore city manager Rob Karlinsey used metaphors, personal allegories and a small cube to explain the city’s future as he gave the State of Kenmore address last month.

The event was hosted by the Greater Bothell Chamber of Commerce at the Inglewood Golf Club. Karlinsey was the keynote speaker, opening with excitement for the chamber’s upcoming name change to include Kenmore due to the large number of Kenmore businesses in the organization.

The presentation focused on the city’s economic development, recently funded projects and the city’s trajectory as a whole. Karlinsey compared the city’s growth to a growing child.

“(Growth) doesn’t happen overnight, right?” he asked. “(It’s) growing in tiny little increments every day and all those little increments add up over time and pretty soon, you have beautiful city on your hands.”

Karlinsey reinforced this theme throughout his address as he spoke about the various Kenmore projects in development.

Currently, the city’s top priority is pedestrian and bicycle safety. The Kenmore City Council set a Target Zero in 2014, which aims to have zero pedestrian and bike accidents or injuries by 2025.

The city has worked toward this goal and by adding 5,000 linear feet of sidewalk since June 2016, 18 new crosswalks and achieving a bronze-level recognition from Walk Friendly Communities and The League of American Bicyclists.

“I know bronze isn’t platinum or gold, but its progress, it’s one increment towards becoming that walkable city,” Karlinsey said. “Just a few years ago we applied for this status and they didn’t give it to us at all but after several years of progress and the things we’ve been doing, they gave us bronze level status. So we’re pretty thrilled about that.”

Karlinsey went on to outline the West Sammamish Bridge replacement, which will be largest single project the city has ever completed and include sidewalk expansions, a lookout point and dedicated bike lanes.

Additionally, Karlinsey mentioned the Lodge at Saint Edward State Park, which is currently under development to become a national park-style lodge, and listed off new restaurants that are coming to Kenmore. The Guest House opened on the same day as the address and welcomed Mayor David Baker as their first guest, and the Seaplane Bar and Grill is currently under construction adjacent to the Town Square and Hangar.

Karlinsey concluded his address with talks on the Lakepointe property, which sits where the Sammamish River meets Lake Washington.

“This peice of property has so much potential but it has languished as an undeveloped industrial site for decades,” Karlinsey said. “Multiple developers over the years have tried and failed to get this project off the ground. Why? Because it has extraordinary costs associated with it.”

These costs are caused by the soil, which is unstable because of its previous use as a WSDOT landfill when Interstate 5 was under construction.

Currently, the city is working with the latest developer to create a project plan that will work financially for the developer and have the smallest impact on the community and the traffic.

“That is going to be super hard, but I think it’s doable,” Karlinsey said. “This (project) is years in the making and I think best-case scenario, if it all went well, they’ll be breaking ground in the early 2020s, but my guess is more like the mid-2020s. So it’s still a long way off, but there is progress.”

Karlinsey received a standing ovation from all attendees. The chamber will host the State of the City Of Bothell address on March 19.

“Through incremental, relentless growth and by doing hard things, we can continue on that upward trajectory toward human flourishing right here in the City of Kenmore,” Karlinsey concluded.

Kenmore city manager Rob Karlinsey gives the State of Kenmore address to city staff and local business owners at the Inglewood Golf Club. Kailan Manandic, Bothell/Kenmore Reporter

Kenmore city manager Rob Karlinsey gives the State of Kenmore address to city staff and local business owners at the Inglewood Golf Club. Kailan Manandic, Bothell/Kenmore Reporter

More in News

Matt Marshall, leader of the Washington Three Percenters gun rights group, addresses a crowd rallying for Second Amendment rights Jan. 17 at the state Capitol in Olympia. Marshall condemned Republican leadership in the House of Representatives, which expelled Rep. Matt Shea from the Republican Caucus. Marshall announced his candidacy for the 2nd District seat held by House Minority Leader J.T. Wilcox. Photo by Cameron Sheppard, WNPA News Service
Gun rights advocates rally at Capitol

Criticism levied at Matt Shea investigation, Republican leadership.

Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson (center) announced a lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson in a press conference Jan. 2. Debbie Warfield of Everett (left) lost her son to a heroin overdose in 2012. Skagit County Commissioner Lisa Janicki (right) lost her son to an overdose of OxyContin in 2017. They are joined by Rep. Lauren Davis of Shoreline (second from right), founder of the Washington Recovery Alliance. (TVW screenshot)
AG Bob Ferguson talks lawsuits, gun control

Washington state Attorney General stopped by Sound Publishing’s Kirkland office.

Sen. Mona Das, D-Kent, the primary sponsor of SB 5323, speaking on the bill. (Photo courtesy of Hannah Sabio-Howell)
Proposed law adds a fee to plastic bags at checkout

Senate passes bill to ban single-use plastic bags, place 8-cent fee on reusable plastic bags.

From left to right: Corina Pfeil, Melanie O’Cain, Rod Dembowski, Milton Curtis and David Baker. Photo courtesy city of Kenmore
Baker, Herbig continue as Kenmore mayor, deputy mayor

They were appointed at the Jan. 13 council meeting, during which councilmembers were also sworn in.

Development has encroached on the East Lake Sammamish Trail (at right). Joe Livarchik/file photo
King County files lawsuit to finish East Lake Sammamish Trail

Homeowners have until September to remove buildings and other property from the right of way.

Bellevue residents Marko and Karla Ilicic play a hockey game in the Topgolf Swing Suite inside Forum Social House. Natalie DeFord/staff photo
Forum Social House opens in Bellevue

Eastside gets new nightclub, mini golf, swing suites.

In November 2019, Washington voters approved Initiative 976, which calls for $30 car tabs. Sound Publishing file photo
Republicans try to guarantee $30 car tabs amid court hangup

Lawmakers sponsor companion bills in the House and Senate.

King County Metro’s battery-electric bus. Photo courtesy of
King County could bump up Metro electrification deadlines

Transportation generates nearly half of all greenhouse gas emissions in the state.

Gov. Jay Inslee delivered his 2020 State of the State Address on Tuesday, Jan. 14. (Photo courtesy of Washington State Office of the Governor)
Gov. Inslee delivers State of the State Address

By Leona Vaughn, WNPA News Service OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay Inslee stood… Continue reading

Most Read