LFP Wall Ordinance Meeting This Thursday May 11th 7pm at City Hall



There is a Public Hearing on May 11th, 7pm, to discuss the proposed wall ordinance - (See Below)

Join Zoom Webinar: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/81208922305
Call into Webinar: 253-215-8782 | Webinar ID: 812 0892 2305

 The City is writing a wall ordinance. It places the ultimate authority for all decisions regarding the wall construction, landscaping, and aesthetics with our public works director without the benefit of oversight or public engagement. There is no transparency to the process nor is there a repeal process to the decision making. Now, is your time to speak.

If you have concerns about the appearance of the ST3 walls, the height of the walls, the impending graffiti attracted to the walls, or the reflected noise off the 4,000 linear feet of concrete walls, please attend this hearing. I am attaching an image of the wall type proposed by ST3 for transit related development, like ours. This is a typical WSDOT wall. 

Also, I am attaching a letter written by Laurie Spivack, Founder and President, Goodbye Graffiti. Laurie is an experienced professional who has worked with communities for over 20 years, abating graffiti for transit related developments. Her perspective is relevant here. 


Vicki Vickiscuri

May 8, 2023

Re: SR522/145 BRT LFP

City of Lake Forest Park

17425 Ballinger Way NE, Lake Forest Park, WA 98155 jjohnson@cityoflfp.gov


I have been asked to comment on ST3 transit expansion on Bothell Way in Lake Forest Park by homeowners fronting HWY 522 being asked to negotiate Acquisition and Easement contracts.

During my over 20 year tenure as founder and owner of Goodbye Graffiti in Seattle, I have seen the success and failure of different transit routes firsthand. Most recently we were contracted by Sound Transit for graffiti removal at 42 Sound Transit stations along with many other continuing contracts. My observation of similar urbanist projects leads to a stark conclusion about these proposed Lake Forest Park expansions, especially with no planned street and sidewalk lighting.

The most blatant problems from my considerable experience are given as follows:

This section is extremely poorly lit at night, which has already led to a fair amount of property crime in the area. Night time is completely dark along most of this stretch. Being poorly lit, it feels unsafe for pedestrians to and from transit opportunities, is a graffiti magnet, litter will follow and fulfills every prerequisite for a greater influx of crime. Crime damages the usability of transit and degrades the neighborhood. Crime also tends to attract more of itself. That degeneration will only hurt the area's success in transit use. The long, large retaining walls and flat surface as proposed are a huge "palette" for gang and wantabe graffiti artists. This part of the project could not be a more tempting target!

These problems generally follow a pattern, first observed and then those that naturally follow from the preceding problem. Graffiti is a sign of urban decay. It is widely known that graffiti itself is the precursor to even greater issues. In my many years of work and observation in Seattle and surrounding areas, all of these above instances have been notable. The pattern is clear.

There are a few ways to mitigate the issues outlined above that have proven to be effective:

Sidewalk lighting would be a powerful deterrent right now, but an absolute necessity for the added foot traffic as sidewalks are added, especially with less natural light in winter. An active maintenance plan and upkeep of the large walls and sidewalk border plants is essential to keeping the area safe and therefore keeping transit more accessible for all. Eyes on the street are essential to deter graffiti and crime. A lower speed limit generates less traffic noise and pedestrians feel safer, leading to more use of sidewalks and transit.

I hope my experience and thoughts can guide the city of Lake Forest Park toward a better plan.

Laurie Spivack

Notice of Public Hearing-May 11, 2023 for Proposed Code Amendments regarding Retaining Walls

City of Lake Forest Park



THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2023 – 7:00 P.M.

Proposed Code Amendments regarding Retaining Walls

Join Zoom Webinar: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/81208922305
Call into Webinar: 253-215-8782 | Webinar ID: 812 0892 2305


The City of Lake Forest Park City Council has been reviewing proposed amendments to the Lake Forest Park Municipal Code (LFPMC) code regarding Retaining Walls for adoption under Ordinance Number 23-1263. This ordinance proposes to amend Title 12, Streets, Sidewalks, and Public Places, of the LFPMC by creating a new Chapter 12.50, Retaining Walls.

The public hearing will be conducted during the City Council’s regular meeting on May 11, 2023. The meeting will begin at 7:00 P.M. and the public hearing will commence thereafter. The public hearing will be held in person at the City Council Chambers and virtually. Instructions for how to participate in the virtual public hearing may be found on the agenda for the meeting. Written testimony will be accepted prior to the meeting and distributed to the City Council and verbal testimony will be accepted during the public hearing.

Written comments should be submitted to City Clerk Matt McLean at mmclean@cityoflfp.com no later than 5:00 p.m. local time on the date of the hearing. Any person wishing to provide oral testimony at the hearing is encouraged to register via the Remote Public Comment Sign-in Form on the City’s Hybrid City Council Meetings webpage (https://www.cityoflfp.com/615/Hybrid-City-Council-Meetings) by 5:00 p.m. on the date of the meeting. Persons who have not signed up on the online public hearing sign-in sheet will be called upon to raise their hand through the Zoom meeting webinar feature and will be added to the speakers’ queue by the City Clerk, to be called upon by the Meeting Chair or designee. A request to speak can also be made by phone directly to the City Clerk at (206) 368-5540 prior to 5:00 pm on the date of the meeting.

Matt McLean

City Clerk

May 1, 2023

For links to retaining wall discussions at city council meetings, please see our Sound Transit BRT page.

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