Make developers pay for growth

The city of Black Diamond is running out of time.

Growth must pay for growth! This needs to be repeated now that we are beginning to see the reality of OakPointe development.

The Black Diamond City Council should consider that both the state of Washington and King County have bigger problems than the state Route 169 corridor between Renton and Enumclaw. The issues of traffic and general capacity of infrastructure need to be addressed by municipalities. The only reasonable path for Black Diamond is to require growth to pay for growth.

To maintain the quality of life, the rate of growth must be controlled to our area’s ability to adjust. Presently there is no balance between requiring developers to make capacity increases before they are allowed to build more.

The city of Black Diamond has been letting OakPointe build too much, too fast and Oakpointe has taken advantage of the city’s unwillingness to stand up to them. In the past two years, all of the following requirements have been deferred or waived:

• Meaningful open space conservation

• Road improvement design (SR 169/Ravensdale Road, Rock Creek Bridge)

• Water quality in our salmon-bearing streams (construction pollution running directly into Ginder Creek), low-impact development requirements and better stormwater treatment options ignored in favor of less effective underground storm water vaults

• Design of our city springs water system repairs

• Complete fiscal annual review

We need to require new development to pay more for their infrastructure needs and protect more of our natural areas. We can’t rely on the state, the county or larger cities to protect our rural town. We have to do this for ourselves. If we fail, the declining quality of life is going to cause the people who can to move away. These are the people that keep the local economy healthy with money they earn regionally and spend locally.

The longer the city takes to properly address these matters the harder it will be to clean up the mess!

Gary Davis

Black Diamond

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