City Proclaims Black History Month, Tree Code and SMP Updates, and Traffic Impacts in Totem Lake

View as a webpage

this week in kirkland

February 6, 2020

city of kirkland washington

City Council Proclaims Black History Month in Kirkland

During their Tuesday, February 4 meeting, the City of Kirkland proclaimed February as Black History Month in Kirkland.  

The proclamation read by Councilmember Amy Falcone stated that Black History Month is an important opportunity to acknowledge that Black History is American history. It went on to acknowledge and reject the long history of institutional and structural racism toward African Americans in the United States, which has resulted in socioeconomic and other inequities that persist to this day.

The proclamation also shared that the City of Kirkland is currently undertaking proactive measures including the 2020 community learning series called “Kirkland Talks Racism,” meant to respond to expressed concerns that People of Color in general, and Black people, in particular, have lived experiences of an unwelcoming and inequitable community, with the goal of increasing community learning about those topics to contribute to People of Color feeling more welcome and safe in Kirkland.

The proclamation ended by encouraging all Kirkland community members to join us in our community learning series, because by coming together we can do the work needed to create the change in our souls and in our lives that is necessary to create the beloved community envisioned by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther, King, Jr. More information about the learning series can be found on the City website at

City Council with Black History Proclamation

Updates to the Tree Code and Shoreline Master Program Continue

City Council

The City Council continued discussions regarding the tree code update and the Shoreline Master Program (SMP) update during their meeting on February 4. The tree code update discussion will return to the City Council on Tuesday, February 18, and it will focus on Landmark trees and groves. More information on the proposed code updates can be found on the City website.  

The City Council discussed nine elements of the proposed SMP update during their meeting. This discussion can be viewed on the City website (starting at approximately 02:47). This topic will return to the City Council at a future meeting. More information is available on the SMP page

Welcoming Kirkland Initiative Town Hall Meetings

Members of the Kirkland community are encouraged to participate in a February Town Hall discussion for the Welcoming Kirkland Initiative.

This pair of identical Town Hall meetings on Saturday February 15, 9:00-10:30 a.m. and Thursday February 20, 6:00-7:30 p.m. are designed to invite our community to explore and propose potential new expectations and protocols for the way businesses interact with police and community members in the kinds of situations where, historically, People of Color have felt unwelcome in public establishments. Rather than proposing a limited set of solutions at this point, the initiative is seeking broad and diverse perspectives to identify approaches that have the greatest opportunity to be successful. 

Welcoming Kirkland is a collaborative effort between the City of Kirkland and Leadership Eastside to engage Kirkland residents, visitors, businesses, nonprofits, and the City – including police – regarding how we function together for the health of the overall community.

This Initiative was launched to respond to expressed concerns that People of Color in general, and Black people in particular, have lived experiences of an unwelcoming and inequitable community, in contrast to the City’s stated goal to be safe, inclusive and welcoming for all.

Your unique perspective is valued as our community works together to create a more Welcoming Kirkland. Registration for each of the two identical Town Hall Meetings is not required, but is encouraged at or

If you have questions, please email

Traffic Alerts for Feb. 6 through Feb. 13

Progress continues on a series of major investments in the Totem Lake neighborhood, including the construction of the Totem Lake Bridge, improvements to Totem Lake Park and the Totem Lake Gateway. Work starting on Feb. 10 will reduce Totem Lake Boulevard’s nighttime travel lanes to two throughout most of February.

For two weeks, starting Feb. 10, drivers will have access to one of Totem Lake Boulevard’s northbound and southbound lanes between Northeast 124th Street and 120th Avenue Northeast.

The lane-reductions start at 7 p.m. and continue until 5 a.m.

The Northshore Utility District will be using the Boulevard’s other three lanes to increase the capacity of the area’s sewage system.

The Northshore Utility District’s project is the second in a series of projects that will reduce access along Totem Lake Boulevard, the Cross Kirkland Corridor or Northeast 124th Street.

Projects that start later in February will reduce day-time access to Totem Lake Boulevard. The City of Kirkland will continue to provide weekly updates to these closures. If you have questions please visit or or contact Christian Knight, senior neighborhood services coordinator, (425) 587-3831,

day time traffic closures

night time traffic closures in totem lake

Kirkland Business Partners with City and Ecology to be more Environmentally Friendly

A Kirkland dry cleaner, Classic One Cleaners, took massive steps this month to green their operations and prevent toxic pollution to our air, water, and soil. They are the city’s first dry cleaner to take advantage of the Department of Ecology’s new program to help dry cleaners offset the costs of eliminating and replacing old equipment that uses percholoroethylene, or PERC, in their cleaning equipment.

PERC is a dry-cleaning solvent that has been nearly universally used by dry cleaners for decades. Unfortunately, the improper use, storage, and disposal of PERC has resulted in contamination of groundwater, soil, and air around dry-cleaning sites across the country. PERC is also likely to be cancer-causing in humans and potential nerve and brain damage, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Through Ecology’s new program, Puget Sound dry cleaners can receive reimbursements up to $20,000 for upgrading to environmentally friendly wet cleaning practices.

According to the Toxics Use Reduction Institute, wet cleaning is a “water-based process that uses computer-controlled washers and dryers, biodegradable detergents, and specialized equipment to process delicate garments that would otherwise need to be dry cleaned.”

Classic One Cleaners has invested substantial resources in properly disposing of their old equipment and upgrading their operations. These efforts make them the first dry cleaner in Kirkland to switch fully to newer and safer wet cleaning equipment. Working with City of Kirkland pollution prevention staff, Classic One was able to take advantage of Ecology’s reimbursement funds, as well as additional rebates from the King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program to substantially offset their costs.

“Kirkland is strongly committed to supporting businesses to manage potential sources of pollution in the most environmentally friendly way possible,” said Rachel Konrady, the City of Kirkland’s Surface Water Planner and Pollution Prevention Program Coordinator. “The Pollution Prevention Assistance Program is an excellent partnership between the City and local businesses to help implement meaningful changes to keep our streams, wetlands, and lakes clean.”

With 15 of 17 dry-cleaners in Kirkland now cleaning without PERC machines, the City hopes Kirkland can be one of the first Puget Sound cities to be completely PERC-free. City pollution prevention staff are currently working with the remaining Kirkland dry cleaners who use PERC in their machines to provide technical assistance throughout the replacement process.

To learn more about the City’s Business Pollution Prevention program visit the City website. 

classic one cleaners

King County Housing Authority Accepting Applications for Section 8 Waitlist February 12 to 25

Apply for a chance to get on the Section 8 waitlist for rental assistance. From February 12 to 25, King County Housing Authority will accept new applicants for potential placement on its Section 8 waitlist. Applications are free to submit and enter you into a lottery system for a chance to receive rental assistance in King County. Learn more and apply today:

King County Housing Authority Section 8 Waitlist accepting applications Feb 12-25

Upcoming Events

tax 2020 update



2020 Update from King County Assessor John Wilson

Tuesday, February 11 at 3:30 p.m. 

Kingsgate Library

Are you one of the 26,000 qualified seniors and disabled King County homeowners who have yet to register for the current Senior Property Tax Exemption?* Would you like to learn about the new income eligibility rules for 2020 property tax relief? Would you like to learn when and how you can apply? King County Tax Assessor John Wilson will explain the new eligibility requirements for Senior/Disabled Property Tax Relief that went into effect in January of 2020 (SB5160). Learn how the Senior Citizen/Disabled Exemption works, who might qualify, what to do if you think you might qualify and where to get help with the application.

132nd Square Park rendering

Open House for 132nd Square Park

Wednesday, February 12 from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

Kirkland City Hall 

The community is invited to an open house to review and provide comment on the 30% design progress for the 132nd Square Park improvement project on Wednesday, February 12 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at City Hall. Feedback received will help inform the final design. Landscape architects, engineers and City staff will be in attendance to answer any questions. For more information on this project visit the 132nd Square Park page on the City website. 

seattle skyline

Zoning and Segregation in the City of Seattle

Wednesday, February 12, 7 p.m 

Kingsgate Library 

Presented by Nisma Gabobe, Sightline Institute

Access to public schools and parks is affected by city zoning. Discuss solutions such as modernizing the city zoning code to permit a broader range of housing types within walking distance of these places. This event is sponsored by the King County Library System. 


Application Deadline for Boards and Commissions

Thursday, February 13 at 4 p.m.

The City of Kirkland has adult and youth vacancies occurring on several of its advisory boards and commissions. Interested Kirkland residents, or those meeting the eligibility requirements, are invited to apply. Eligibility requirements differ for each board or commission. Some incumbents on these boards and commissions have served one term, are eligible, and intend to apply for reappointment as noted in the descriptions.  Completed applications must be received by the City Clerk prior to 4 p.m. on Thursday, February 13, 2020. To learn more about each board and to obtain the community service application, go to the Current Recruitment Positions page, or call the City Clerk’s Office at 425-587-3190.

green kirkland partnership love connection

Give Everest Creek a little love on Valentines’ Day

Friday, February 14, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Join the Green Kirkland Partnership and volunteer to help plant native plants along Everest Creek in Everest Park.

This wonderful urban habitat needs your love! Tools, gloves, and materials are provided – for more information and to register, visit the Green Kirkland event page.

Can’t make Friday but want to give some love to a park near you? Volunteers are needed at several stewardship events on weekends in February – checkout the listings on the Green Kirkland Calendar.

Questions contact: or visit

Alexander's Hope

Alexander’s Hope Valentine’s Day Dash 5K run/walk

Saturday, February 15 at 9 a.m. with registration beginning at 7

Heritage Park

This is the first ever Valentine's Day Dash 5K run/walk organized by Alexander's Hope, a Kirkland-based nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of organ donation and its incredible impact on the lives it saves. Alexander's Hope was founded by the Chaffey family in honor of Alexander Chaffey, whose life was saved by a heart transplant. The nonprofit was also created to help catch undiagnosed heart conditions in young, seemingly healthy individuals. Event organizers plan to make this an annual event. This scenic 5K course travels along Kirkland's sparkling waterfront! Furry four-legged friends are welcome at this event, which offers a participant shirt and finisher's medal. For more information about Alexander's Hope, please visit: