The Wellington Hills Sports Complex? No, it's NOT a done deal!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

How to dig dirt really fast

We're fairly certain Snohomish County Parks and Recreation is not planning to use this machine for their 'cut and fill' leveling of the Wellington Hills Golf Course... at least we think it's a rumor.

If you're curious about this excavator, here's a YouTube showing what it does.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

I know that county guy or at least I've seen him before

After the May 8th bombshell fell on us about the plan to change Wellington Hills Golf Course into a "sports complex", I went to all the meetings: the ones held at the Brightwater conference center, a meeting at the golf course community center and numerous meetings at neighbor's homes.

... there was something about the Parks and Recreation guy that seemed familiar ... like I've listened to his spiel before ... then it hit me ...., yes I had, he reminded me of "Professor Harold Hill" in the film, "The Music Man".  Yes, that's it!

... a musical (and clever) lesson in misdirection

Monday, July 16, 2012

Let's talk about Snohomish County's plans for the Wellington Golf Course

This is a meeting by and for neighbors in the Wellington Hills Golf Course, Woodinville area.

That means residents of BOTH Snohomish and King Counties!

Let's talk about:

  • What exactly is Snohomish County proposing for the Wellington Hills Golf Course?
  • The loss of a 90 year old local landmark.
  • A Costco-sized parking lot on the Golf Course.
  • Commercial buildings totally over 110,000 square feet.
  • Late night field lights. 
  • Evening and week-end noise. 
  • TRAFFIC SNARLS on both Route 9 at 240th St. SE and 156th/75th Ave. SE.
                                                     What can we DO?
                     Neighbors make a difference!  
                            Join us in a community meeting: 

The Wellington Hills Golf Course Club House
Wednesday July 25, 2012
7 - 9 PM  

Saturday, July 14, 2012

What to expect

There's a place, just south of Woodinville, known as "60 Acres".  Or, as stated on their web page, "60 Acres is a King County Park located in the Sammamish River valley on the north side of Redmond. It is situated on 94 total acres, including 60 acres of premium athletic fields."

More or less, that's what Snohomish County's Parks and Recreation wants to do with the Wellington Golf Course.  Tho' 60 acres doesn't have 110,000 square feet of buildings or difficult hills or terrible traffic intersections ... or a quiet neighborhood within spitting distance of the activity fields or parking lots..

Thank you Reed Keagle for these photos.

No this isn't 240th St. SE or 71st Drive SE (the Wellington Golf Course roads) ... but it could be if the Parks and Recreations Dept. of Snohomish County isn't checked.

What happens when large parking lots are filled ...

Everyone is well behaved, orderly and will pay attention to signs (that's what the Snohomish County representative said people will do).

At least the off-leach area will be orderly ...

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Willis Tucker Community Park, aka, What to expect in our neighborhood

Willis Tucker Community Park is often touted by Snohomish County Officials as the model for the future Wellington Hills Sports Complex. The basic message is, "See Willis Tucker Park" .... that's how nice we do things."

Here's something I found in today's Seattle's PI .... Outdoor Movies

And the outdoor movies are being shown at Willis Tucker Park.

The description for each movie:

(Movie name and date) "Snohomish, free. The event is at Willis Tucker Community Park, 6705 Puget Park Dr.. Popcorn and soda can be purchased there. Open seating begins at 7 p.m. Pre-movie entertainment includes laser tag, bouncy houses, balloon animals and the  Sno-Isle Bookmobile with books related to the movie on screen. The park has grass seating, and viewers are allowed to bring low-back chairs and blankets."

Yes indeedy, The now Quiet Wellington Hills area will no longer be quiet once we get parking lots (700+ cars), sports tournaments, PA systems, umpire whistles, screaming/cheering fans, police sirens and ... outdoor movies.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

We Need Your Help

We've been to all the informal meetings presented by Snohomish County and local neighbors have been very vocal with their concerns regarding the County’s plans. All the while the County’s representative simply says, “Trust us, we know what you want”.
At the first public meeting (May 8, 2012) the County’s representative said, “This (sports complex) is a done-deal”.
They told us there was a web page for leaving comments and they were using the feed-back to design the sports complex.  But after repeated requests for the web page address we were told, sorry, there is no such site. 
Was the ad-hoc planning committee hand-picked from groups and businesses who have vested interests in the sports complex? Yes.

Were there ever planning discussions with our neighborhood? No. 
Was there ever the hint of compromise regarding the design or purpose of this sports complex? No. 
They’ve said they know it will radically change our neighborhood and the surrounding area.
They’ve said it’s a Pay-To-Play sports complex.
They’ve also said, they will first build the sports complex and worry about the local roads after the sports complex is finished.
We’ve hired an attorney to assist with the legal issues relating to the County’s plans  ... 
and that costs money.
If you can help out, please contribute to the Wellington Park Defense Fund.
Send your checks to 
“Neighbors to Save Wellington Park” (Margaret PhilipTreasurer) 
15110 NE 204th St. 
Woodinville, WA  98072
If you have questions please contact
Todd Bailey at: 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Woodinville Group Formed To Save Wellington Park

Sunday, July 1, 2012


            Frustrated by Master Planning for the Wellington park near Woodinville, community leaders are forming “Neighbors to Save Wellington Park.”  And have hired an attorney to counter plans by the Snohomish County Parks Department  to convert the 100 acre Wellington golf course site into a Regional Sports Complex.

            The attorney is Richard Aramburu of Aramburu & Eustis,LLP  practicing  administrative, environmental and land use law, including litigation and appeals under Washington State’s Growth Management Act (GMA) and the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA). Aramburu also represents “Concerned Neighbors of Wellington” (CNW), a  King  County based group fighting the nearby proposed “Woodtrails” development.

            Earlier in the year Snohomish County bought the Wellington Golf Course site from the University of Washington with $9 million of $70 million in Brightwater mitigation funds agreed to by King and Snohomish Counties as far back as 2005. Neighbors in King and Snohomish Counties first heard of the Snohomish County Parks Department proposals for the Golf Course in a Public Meeting called by Parks at the Brightwater Education Center, May 8, 2012.  In the last two months there have been occasional public and numerous small-group meetings soliciting public input in the development of a Master Plan to be presented to Snohomish County Council on July 10.

            Representatives of “Neighbors to Save Wellington Park” say that the process is way too  fast and that the proposed Master Plan for a  Regional Sports Complex at this specific site raises fundamental  questions about the process:

1) What was the public site selection process that identified the site as the most  suitable location for the proposed use? A Regional Sports Complex at Wellington or anywhere in South Snohomish County, is not included In Snohomish County’s Comprehensive Parks Plan or as part of any publicly-identified “needs study.” No acquisition of park property nor approval of a master plan occur unless preceded by a public site selection process.

2) How can a Regional Sports Complex, to include commercial buildings and paved parking with a footprint as large as the adjacent Costco development be located outside of an Urban Growth Boundary required by the Growth Management Act? The Wellington Golf Course site and adjacent neighborhoods are designated as   “rural” lands on County land use maps.

3)    Have adjacent communities such as the City of Woodinville been formally notified that a major development is planned at a location affecting City transportation and other infrastructure?  If not, why has this necessary requirement taken almost 8 years to be realized?

4)    Why were transportation, drainage, community disruption, environmental and other limitations not accounted for in a feasibility plan before the development of a Master Plan for the site? It appears that related work by Snohomish County’s Public Works and other departments have to now “catch up” to what many consider a “done deal.”

5)    What will be the process for reviews under the State’s Growth Management Act (GMA) and State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) Word in the community is that the any additional reviews of a Regional Sports Complex may be  “SEPA Light”  to avoid complete environmental analysis and skirt “concurrency” requirements of the GMA that may otherwise torpedo the development of the Park.  This course of action does not seem in the best interest of South Snohomish County and City of Woodinville communities!!

 “Neighbors to Save Wellington Park” believes that the Wellington Golf Course site offers a wonderful potential for both active and passive park uses without the destructive impacts raised during the current master planning process and its emphasis on a Regional Sports Complex.

According to spokesperson Todd Bailey:

It’s ironic that the mitigation money from Brightwater might pay for something that is far worse for the community than Brightwater itself and that we have to spend our own  private resources  to counter a  $9 million dollar public project aimed at our community and to the detriment of  the public’s long-range interests.”

For more information on how to get involved, contact: Todd Bailey at:  

To contribute or pledge to a Wellington Park Defense Fund  send your check to “Neighbors to Save Wellington Park”  Margaret Philip, Treasurer, 15110 NE 204th St. Woodinville, WA  98072.

Source: Ted Pankowski at (425) 486-5741.

Map, Wellington Hills area

Google map of the Wellington Hills Golf Course, Wellington Hills area.

Snohomish County's Proposed Sports Complex

Snohomish County's latest version of their proposed sports complex on the Wellington Hills Golf Course.