Pepin Creek issues up for hearing Monday

LYNDEN ­— Various aspects of the Pepin Creek planning effort are up for public comment at the Lynden City Council meeting of March 4.

For one thing, it is proposed that a moratorium on development in the Pepin Creek Subarea be extended for a sixth time since 2016, for six months again, to allow all planning and development of guidelines to continue without impediment.

Pepin Creek is a large 470-acre area west of Benson Road — with 110 acres in city limits so far — that is seen as Lynden’s next direction of growth, containing 1,700 to 2,000 dwelling units. Many details, from adequate drainage to types of housing and how it all can be paid for, are being worked on in city Planning and Public Works.

Also up for hearing are three sets of zoning text amendments coming to the City Council.

These deal with Pepin Creek zoning categories and overlays, including a revised Residential Mixed Density zone to be used within the subarea, and related land development standards.

“The current proposals come forward after careful review that has included public survey results, input from local real estate agents and builders, detailed work sessions with the Planning Commission and Community Development Committee,” writes Planning Director Heidi Gudde.

The Planning Commission has approved the changes.

Even this step does not assign zoning to specific properties within the subarea, Gudde notes.

It is hoped that this spring the entire Pepin Creek Subarea Plan, which was released last September, can go before the Planning Commission and City Council for approval. It will designate zoning categories, address known flood hazards and constraints, and present financial analysis on development.

City departments are working with consultants as well.

Also:

  • The Police Department is working with Lexipol, of Texas, to develop a policy manual allowing for updates, also daily training bulletins and a support package, all meant to keep law enforcement agencies abreast of safety, liability and legislative changes. 

The council approved a 14-page solutions proposal.

  • Back on Feb. 12, Mayor Scott Korthuis declared a weather emergency to deal immediately with the winter storm that was hitting the city.
  • A latecomers’ sanitary sewer extension agreement for the North Prairie Phase 7 plat was approved.
  • The old city water treatment plant building on Judson Alley will be demolished in 2019. In March, said councilor Gary Bode, there will be a “garage sale” of “very specific” salvageable items of equipment from the plant; the city is preparing a notice.

The merchants’ Downtown Business Association asks that this area be leveled and turned into a designated parking lot for employees.