King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn on Thursday introduced a motion that would prioritize the purchase of six parcels along SR-169 (SE Renton Maple Valley Road) by the County through its Conservation Futures Committee.
King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn on Thursday introduced a motion that would prioritize the purchase of six parcels along SR-169 (SE Renton Maple Valley Road) by the County through its Conservation Futures Committee. The funding for this purchase would come from the Conservation Futures tax levy, which is used to help preserve land in King County as open space to maintain a healthy and pleasant environment.
“Considering that King County may soon permit a controversial asphalt plant on SR-169 across from the Cedar River, conserving the adjacent properties will help provide a buffer and preserve the rural character of unincorporated communities near Renton and Maple Valley,” Dunn said. “More importantly, this funding would ensure that if the proposed property for the asphalt plant gets locked up in court, the County will be at the ready the purchase it as open space.”
King County would use the acquired land as an open space corridor addition, community separator, wildlife habitat, and scenic resources, protecting it from development and other uses. The properties would connect the Cedar Grove Natural Area to the Spring Lake-Lake Desire Park-McGarvey Park open space complex, which consists of over 925 acres of contiguous protected open space, over five miles of recreational trails, and habitat for a variety of wildlife. They would also provide a buffer to the neighborhood of Maple Valley Heights, protecting it from SR-169 traffic noise.
If the legislation is approved, The Water and Land Resources Division of King County’s Department of Natural Resources and Parks would submit proposals to the landowners and jurisdictions in which the prioritized properties are located as part of the 2022 Conservation Futures tax levy funding selection process.
Dunn’s motion will be referred to the Mobility and Environment Committee.