Totem Lake Transformation | City Facilities Reopened | Transfer Station Meeting | Metro Rider Alert | Traffic Alert

View as a webpage

this week in kirkland

August 6, 2021

city of kirkland washington

Table of Contents:

City Council Recap 

City Council

Thanks to all who attended the August 4, 2021 City Council meeting, which took place via the Zoom videoconferencing platform. We are grateful to have such an engaged community. Thank you!

Kirkland City Council meetings are streamed live on the City of Kirkland Facebook page and the City YouTube channel, in addition to the livestream on the City website. Meetings are also televised on Comcast Cable Channel 21 and Ziply Cable Channel 31.

Here are a few highlights from the meeting:

Study Session:

Preliminary Update of the 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Program: The City Council reviewed the proposed updates to the 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) and related emerging issues and provided direction regarding the proposed changes for Council adoption in December 2021.

Kirkland Avenue/Lake Street Intersection Improvements—Urban Design Update: To improve safety, reduce crossing times, and increase sight distance, the current project scope is to build a raised intersection, replace the ADA ramps, add curb bulbs, and modify the signal system. The City Council provided direction about scope opportunities and other options regarding urban design features.

Juanita Drive Multi-Modal Improvements—NE 132nd Street Connection Concepts: The Juanita Drive corridor is an important north/south regional connection, and it is used by thousands of people driving, walking, or biking daily. In 2014, using an extensive stakeholder engagement process, the City completed the “Juanita Drive Corridor Study” which identified 33 connectivity and safety improvements for people who use the corridor. In 2018, the City completed the first 11 sidewalk, crosswalk, bike lane, and lighting safety improvements under the Juanita Drive Quick Wins Project construction contract. The City Council provided additional direction about conceptual layouts for a connection along NE 132nd Street between 72nd Avenue NE and Juanita Drive NE.

Business Items:

2021-2022 Budget Adjustment: Capital Fund Beginning Balances and Authorized Position Adds: The City Council approved ordinance O-4764 which amended the 2021-2022 Budget by updating the City’s four capital funds to recognize the starting fund balance. This approval also formally approved the conversion of 10 limited term employees (LTE) in the Planning and Building Department to full time employee (FTE) status. Additionally, this action created one new FTE position in the Finance and Administration Department for the City’s Purchasing Agent position.

Rental Assistance and Tenant Protections: The City Council received an update on initial use of funds for a Kirkland rental relief program and was asked if they would like to consider additional tenant protections. The City Council requested more information and deferred this discussion to a later date..

To view the Council discussions on these agenda items, visit: The full agenda packet and recording of the meeting are located on the City of Kirkland website at: The next City Council meeting is on Tuesday, September 7, 2021.

Renewed Totem Lake Park Opens to the Public

Totem Lake Park OpeningThe City of Kirkland opened Totem Lake’s renovated ecological centerpiece to the Kirkland community on July 28, 2021 while previewing two other projects that, when completed, will expedite the transformation of Kirkland’s first urban center into the walkable, vibrant and green village that community leaders envisioned two decades ago.

“We are standing amid an impressive display of public and private investment that has been years in the making,” said Kirkland Mayor Penny Sweet, in prepared remarks. “Good ideas, thoughtful plans, and an incredible amount of hard work can bring us something even better than we first imagined.”

The renovated park features a 10-foot wide boardwalk that meanders through the wetlands and connects to the Cross Kirkland Corridor, a playground with features that are accessible to all ages and abilities, new restrooms, as well as a new system to protect the wetland and new native plantings.

Also visible at the event on July 28 were the beginnings of the Totem Lake Connector pedestrian and bicycle bridge, as well as the intersection improvements in progress at 120th Avenue Northeast and Totem Lake Boulevard. Kirkland’s project engineers expect to complete the Totem Lake Connector by the end of next summer. They expect to complete the intersection improvements by this fall.

The event also provided an opportunity for leaders to walk along the section of Totem Lake Boulevard that connects Totem Lake Park to the Totem Lake Connector. There, between Northeast 124th Street and 120th Avenue Northeast, with the help of $4.8 million in funding from the Transportation Improvement Board, the City in 2020 rebuilt the roadway, built 10-foot-wide sidewalks and installed pedestrian lighting. The Northshore Utility District also upgraded the area’s stormwater and sewer systems.

The revitalization of Totem Lake derives from a community vision for an urban village where residents could live, work and play and the nearly billion dollars that public agencies and private developers have invested in Totem Lake to manifest that vision. For 15 years, that vision gathered detail as changing economic conditions forced it to evolve. This was a time when City leaders had to consider the future of the mostly vacant Totem Lake malls, an obscure park within 27 acres of wetlands, and a failing roadway that flooded almost annually.

Kirkland’s promise of ambitious public investments into the surrounding infrastructure helped attract a California-based developer, CenterCal, to remove the old malls and build a pedestrian-friendly village in their place. The City of Kirkland has invested more than $60 million in Totem Lake infrastructure projects so far. CenterCal has invested more than $500 million into The Village at Totem Lake.

“In 2003, Totem Lake received [Urban Center] designation,” Sweet said. “And since then the City Council, City leadership and staff, our utility partners, granting agencies, and private developers have planned, prepared, and built toward the renewed and urbanized area you see today.”

To learn more about Totem Lake’s transformation, go to

City Facilities Reopened This Week 

City Facilities Reopening VideoCity facilities that have been closed to the public since March 2020 reopened on Monday, August 2. There was a brief welcoming ceremony in front of City Hall early in the morning to welcome community members and thank city staff for their work throughout the pandemic. For more information, including mask and health check protocols when visiting city facilities, please go to Watch a video of the welcoming ceremony here. Thank you to Kirkland’s Thruline Coffee Co. for donating delicious coffee for everyone for the reopening day!

Boil Water Advisory Lifted on August 5

Boil Water Advisory Lifted

The City of Kirkland worked with the WA State Department of Health to lift the boil water advisory that was in place since approximately 4:30 p.m. on August 3, 2021 for neighborhoods north of NE 85th St., south of NE 124th St., and west of I-405. Water samples have been tested and showed no indication of contamination. The advisory was lifted at approximately 2:30 p.m. on August 5.

What to do after a boil water advisory is lifted:

  • Flush the plumbing in your home by running all cold water faucets for at least 5 minutes each. Flushing simply means letting the water run to ensure that there is fresh water flowing through your pipes.
  • Also flush all appliances connected to the water line like icemakers, water softeners, water dispensers for refrigerators, dishwashers, etc.

The boil water advisory was in effect due to a water main break that occurred at about 2 p.m. on Tuesday, August 3 which caused a loss of pressure in a large portion of Kirkland’s water system. Kirkland staff repaired the water main the evening of August 3.

For the news release, visit our news room. For more information, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page or contact the City through Our Kirkland or call 425-587-3900.

Northeast Recycling and Transfer Station Meeting August 9

King County is evaluating an alternate site in the City of Woodinville for its feasibility as a potential site for the new Northeast Recycling and Transfer Station (NERTS) in the northeast part of King County. The public is invited to learn more about this alternate Woodinville site at a virtual Siting Advisory Group (SAG) meeting on Monday, August 9 from 6:00 to 8:30 PM. The SAG meeting will include an opportunity for public comment. The SAG will discuss and evaluate the alternate site as a potential substitute for the Winsome Trading site in Woodinville. King County intends to include one potential site in Woodinville and two potential sites in the City of Kirkland (the existing Houghton Transfer Station and the Houghton Park and Ride) in the upcoming EIS/SEPA environmental review process that will help determine the site for the new NERTS.

Please see the agenda and get the Zoom link here.

To learn more about the Northeast Transfer Station siting process and history at FAQs and white papers about the environmental aspects and planning history of the Houghton Transfer Station site are also available.

Transfer Station Project

Summer is a Great Time for Outdoor Drainage Maintenance

Outdoor Drainage Maintenance for Summer

Take advantage of the dry, sunny weather to prepare your property’s drainage system for the next rainy season. Leaves, sediment, and debris are much easier to manage when they are dry rather than soggy from rain. Maintain your outdoor drainage system - and prevent clogged gutters and drains - to keep water flowing and prevent flooding:


  • Clean your gutters to keep the rainwater flowing. Dispose of debris in your yard waste bin or home compost pile.


  • Direct water from disconnected downspouts onto lawns or other landscaped areas. Direct away from your building’s foundation and away from neighboring properties.

Yard drains and driveway drains

  • Clean sediment, leaves, and garbage out of drains on your property.

In your neighborhood

  • Do not blow or rake yard waste into the street, ditch, or creek. Dispose of leaves and other yard debris in your yard waste bin, home compost bin, or use as mulch in your garden.
  • Keep nearby storm drains in the street clear of leaves and debris.

Check out Managing Drainage Around Your Property for more information.

Temporary Reroute of Metro Transit Route 255 

Riders of Metro Transit Route 255 will be impacted by a temporary reroute from Aug. 9 to Sept. 3. WSDOT is closing the Montlake Bridge to vehicles during that period.

Metro’s service advisory explains that Route 255 riders who normally transfer to Link Light Rail at the University of Washington Station may want to consider transferring to Metro routes 257 or 311, or Sound Transit Express Route 545, at the Evergreen Point Freeway Station to continue to downtown Seattle. Route 255 will continue serving UW Station, but it may take longer to get there.

Metro riders can always sign up for route-specific alerts notifying them of changes, including for Route 255.

Metro Rider Alert!

Traffic Alerts

Street paving – Highlands

A City of Kirkland contractor repairing curbs and upgrading curb ramps along 112th Avenue Northeast, between Northeast 87th and 97th streets.


Street paving – North Rose Hill

Kirkland’s 2021 street paving contractor is directing traffic on 124th Avenue Northeast while its crews prepare the arterial for street paving later this summer.


98th Avenue Northeast – Juanita

Late night and early morning travelers should expect lane-closures from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., starting Monday along 98th Avenue Northeast, between Forbes Creek Drive and Northeast 116th Street, while Kirkland’s contractor establishes the street’s lanes.

Search 98th Avenue Northeast Repairs on

Totem Lake Boulevard – Totem Lake

Totem Lake Boulevard, between Northeast 124th Street and 120th Avenue Northeast, will close from 11 p.m. Thursday to 4 a.m. Friday while Kirkland’s Totem Lake Connector contractor re-locates equipment.

Kraemer North America is establishing a detour.

Meanwhile, drivers can still turn onto westbound Northeast 124th Street from southbound Totem Lake Boulevard. But they can’t use the right-turning slip-lane that connects the two streets to do so.

The slip-lane remains closed this month while Kirkland’s Totem Lake Connector contractor continues the process of building the pedestrian and bicycle bridge that will connect the two ends of the Cross Kirkland Corridor that are separated by its intersection with Northeast 124th Street and Totem Lake Boulevard.

The City is detouring commercial trucks around the intersection.


Cross Kirkland Corridor – Totem Lake

A detour around the Cross Kirkland Corridor between 120th Place Northeast and 128th Lane Northeast remains in effect while Kirkland’s Totem Lake Connector contractor uses the corridor to build the pedestrian and bicycle bridge.

Totem Lake Park is expected to be completed this summer and the Totem Lake Connector is expected to be completed later in 2022.

Visit or

Cross Kirkland Corridor – Everest/Moss Bay

Cross Kirkland Corridor travelers will continue to encounter a short detour around the trail between Seventh Avenue South and Sixth Street South as construction of the Feriton Spur Park expansion continues. 

The short detour is directing travelers to a protected pathway along Fifth Place South. The park’s developer, SRM Development, expects the detour to continue for five months. During that time, SRM Development will restrict parallel, on-street parking along the north portion of Fifth Place South.   

SRM Development expects to open Feriton Spur Park to open to the public in September. The new park will extend the developed section of the Cross Kirkland Corridor to Sixth Street South with 14 improvements, including a pickleball court, urban farm and the corridor’s first bathroom. 

Northeast 132nd Street - Juanita

Drivers commuting along Northeast 132nd Street, between 100th and 97th avenues northeast should continue to expect minor delays while Kirkland’s Fire Station 24 contractor and Puget Sound Energy work in the street to connect and upgrade utilities for the new Fire Station 24.


Upcoming Events

Cascade Gardner: Made in the Shade  

Cascade Gardener: Made in the Shade
Thursday, August 12, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. (this is an online event)
To sign up for this event, Register Here.

Beautiful plants and designs for dry shade under large trees, cool shade next to the house and how to light up dark corners in your garden with shade loving foliage plants. Includes planting in layers and under the skirts of other plants, saving water by using plants that thrive in dry shade and how to arrange plant material. Plant material list included along with inspiration from amazing low maintenance shade gardens..

Free Summer Meals for Kids and Teens  

Mondays – Fridays | Now until August 27
12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
12315 NE 143rd Street, Kirkland, WA 98034 | 425-821-7686

Nourish your body and brain while you read this summer at the Kingsgate Library!

Visit the webpage for more details!

Cornhole Classic Tourney  

Kirkland Cornhole Classic Tournament
Friday, August 6, 7 p.m.

Under the lights at Lee Johnson Field, join us for a cornhole competition for the ages! Limited space available, sign up your team early to reserve a spot.

Bags start flyin' at 7:00 p.m. Check-in begins at 6:30 p.m. at Lee Johnson Field on Friday, August 6.

  • Round Robin Style Tournament
  • Championship shirts to the winners
  • We provide the cornhole bags
  • $20/Team for Residents
  • $24/Team for Non-Residents

Register today at

Kirkland Urban Kids  


Event Type: Kids/Outdoor Fun for Eastside (and beyond) families

Kirkland Urban Beach-Themed Kids Event
August 14 | 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. 

Families are invited to join Kirkland Urban for a beach-themed KU Kids event! For this month’s craft, Julie from Clown Buggie Entertainment will be at Kirkland Urban’s Fountain Court to lead kids in creating sand art and painting frisbees, answering questions along the way! This event is free and open to the public, and craft kits will be provided upon arrival. Families are also invited to stick around afterwards to enjoy Kirkland Urban’s water feature, with towels provided as supplies last.  For more information: Visit here

Admission: Free | Tickets Required: None
Venue Information:
Fountain Court
425 Urban Plaza, Kirkland, WA 98033

Grass Volleyball Tournament  

Sun, Set, & Spike Grass Volleyball Tournament
Wednesday, August 25 and Friday, August 27

Join us for our first Sun, Set, & Spike Grass Volleyball Tournament at Lee Johnson Field at Peter Kirk Park!

We will be hosting a round robin tournament on Wednesday, August 25 and Friday, August 27. We will be offering a COED and Women's division. COED teams must have 2 men and 2 women to participate.

This is a 4 on 4 tournament and all levels are welcome! Team managers will register their team under the division of their choice. Game times will be sent out one week before the tournament starts.

The winning team from each division will win a prize!

Register your team today at
For tournament rules visit: