Snow and Freezing Temps in Forecast – Are Your Ready? | City Hall Closed for Holidays | Prepare Your Pipes | Shop With a Cop | Totem Lake Ped Bridge Update | Traffic Alerts

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this week in kirkland

December 22, 2021

city of kirkland washington

Table of Contents:

City Hall Holiday Closure

City Hall Closed for Holidays

However you celebrate this time of year, we wish you and yours good health and cheer this holiday season. In observance of the Christmas holiday, City facilities will be closed 12 to 5 p.m. on Dec. 23 and all-day Dec. 24. Fire, Police, and other critical services will remain fully operational during this time.

Snow’s in the Forecast – Stay Informed and Know Who to Contact

Snow RoutesThe current forecast calls for the possibility of snow beginning as early as this Friday night, December 24 and freezing temperatures for much of next week. The City is preparing for the possibility of snow and freezing temperatures over the Christmas holiday and into next week. We understand that every winter storm has a major impact on our community. Our dedicated crews willingly take risks by being out there during a storm to serve our community and do their best to ensure that our priority routes are clear and safe. City staff take this responsibility very seriously and are continually striving to exceed expectations.

Public Works Superintendent Ray Steiger explains in this video how the City prepares snow plows and more when snowy conditions are forecasted.

Key Contact Information

Just as our staff teams are gearing up, we want to make sure that you’re as prepared as you can be. Below you’ll find key contact information and winter weather preparedness tips so that you can stay safe and informed if the snow comes. Additional information can be found on the City’s website at

  • Stay Informed: When winter weather closes roads, the City of Kirkland posts information to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Nextdoor and also to
  • Snow Plow Routes: A map of snow plow routes is available on the City’s website. Plowing, sanding, and deicing follows designated priority routes. If you wish to report conditions in your neighborhood, requests for service can be submitted 24/7 through Our Kirkland or by calling 425-587-3900. Please note: requests outside of the pre-established priority routes may not receive high priority due to resource limitations.
  • Recreation Programs: City staff will evaluate conditions and make the appropriate decision to cancel or delay programs. The Inclement Weather Hotline is 425-587-3335.
  • Solid Waste Pickups: When snow and ice disrupt services, Waste Management will post updates on their website. For more information, go to or call 1-800-592-9995.
  • Report Power Outages or Trees near Power Lines: Power outages can be reported to PSE at For safety reasons, Puget Sound Energy handles tree issues within 12 feet of power lines – call 1-888-225-5773 to report. Learn more about being safe if the power goes out here.

Do You Know What to Do if it Snows?

Staying Safe in SnowWhen a winter storm comes, we’re all in it together. Because City resources can’t reach all locations or respond to every situation, community assistance and personal responsibility are needed to help keep our community safe during the winter months. Here are some ideas on how you can help:

Be Prepared

  • Be prepared at home: stock up on food and other supplies; be prepared for power outages (heat, cooking); have alternative water supplies (bottled water).
  • Be prepared with your vehicle: make sure your vehicle is fully fueled prior to potential snow; have extra warm clothes, including hats, and gloves sturdy warm shoes; keep an extra blanket and extra food and water in your vehicle.
  • If possible, stay home throughout the storm until driving, walking, and biking routes are clear and safe for travel. If you need to go out, know what to expect on the roadways. Be aware of road closures. Know that conditions vary from neighborhood to neighborhood based on micro climates, elevation, and storm response. Be aware of maintenance response vehicles and give them the space to operate. Understand your driving skills and comfort level in hazardous driving conditions.
  • Park vehicles in your driveway or garage to give crews access to the street. Owners are responsible for removing/digging out their vehicles if they are parked on snow routes. If a vehicle is blocking snow and ice response activities, police may use towing services to clear the roads of these vehicles.

Be Proactive

  • Check on your neighbors, particularly any elderly community members or those with young families.
  • In Kirkland, it’s the homeowner’s responsibility to keep driveways and sidewalks clear of snow and ice. Make sure you have a snow shovel handy. Consider checking in with neighbors who may have challenges clearing their sidewalks.
  • Please pull off the road if you are in a minor non-injury accident so that you do not block the roadway and cause additional collisions. Accidents can be reported online by visiting the Washington State Patrol at: Do not abandon your vehicle - it is a hazard to emergency responders including police, fire, and maintenance staff involved in the snow response. Your vehicle also might become a hazard for others using the road and will be at risk to damage and towing at your expense. Vehicles left blocking roadways or intersections will be removed. To check if Kirkland Police removed your vehicle, contact the NORCOM dispatch non-emergency number at 425-577-5656.
  • Remain 50 feet away from all snow response equipment. Applications of anti/deicing materials can disperse at wide rates. If anti/deicing material does get onto a private vehicle, rinse it from the vehicle as soon as possible to reduce corrosion and keep windows clear.
  • Uncover storm drains in front of your house to avoid flooding and uncover gas meters to avoid gas leaks.
  • For emergency issues involving trees in a street, such as an uprooted or fallen tree or a large branch dangling, please call 425-587-3900. The City does not respond to tree issues on private property. If a right-of-way tree has fallen onto private property, it is the private property owner’s responsibility. More winter weather preparedness tips are available on the City’s website.

More winter weather preparedness tips are available on the City’s website.

Prepare Your Pipes for Freezing Temperatures

Protect Your PipesUnprotected pipes can freeze, leaving you with no access to water. Even worse, they can crack or break, leaving you with potential flooding and costly repairs.

How to Protect Pipes

  • Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Keep outside valves open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
  • Add insulation to attics, basements and crawl spaces.
  • Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas.

How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

  • Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
  • Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
  • When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night.

How to Thaw Frozen Pipes

  • Keep the faucet open. As you treat the frozen pipe and the frozen area begins to melt, water will begin to flow through the frozen area.
  • Apply heat to the section of pipe using an electric heating pad wrapped around the pipe, an electric hair dryer, a portable space heater or by wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame device.

See Ready.Gov for more winter weather tips.

Holiday Giving Program

Giving ProgramThe holiday season is fast approaching and it is the time of year that there is a great need in Kirkland and the surrounding communities for food and gifts. Community members that are less fortunate or have had circumstances beyond their control rely on the giving from others to help support their needs.

From now through December 31, 2021, the Kirkland Fire Department stations will be drop points for the collection of non-perishable food and new gifts. The majority of the donations will go to Kirkland Hopelink with several other organizations receiving donations as well.

License Your Pet for a Safe Ride Home

Kirkland Animal Services

As the weather gets colder, pets face increased risk of exposure if they get lost or injured outdoors. Making sure your pet’s license is up to date is the best way for your lost fury friend to be returned swiftly and safely by ACO Hunter WoldsethKirkland’s Animal Control Officer, Hunter Woldseth. When licensed with a City pet license, your lost pet can be easily identified by their license number and returned to your home by ACO Woldseth.

Over the next couple months, ACO Woldseth and other staff members will be doing some door-to-door canvassing to encourage pet owners to renew their pet licenses. More information on how to license your pet can be found on the City’s website:

All dogs and cats 12 weeks old and older who live in Kirkland must be licensed
and vaccinated against rabies.

Shop with a Cop Event Continues Legacy of Generosity

Shop With a CopNearly a dozen families served, including 27 children and young adults

The Kirkland Police Department’s 2021 Shop with a Cop event took place Saturday, December 18, at the Kirkland Fred Meyer. Sponsored by the Kirkland Police Guild and the Kirkland Police Department (KPD), Shop with a Cop is a referral-based program that pairs police officers with youth in the community, who get together for a holiday shopping spree.

A total of 14 off-duty officers, sergeants, detectives and other KPD staff participated in the event, volunteering their time to serve nearly a dozen families. This year’s volunteer base included members of KPD’s extended family, including two children and four significant others, all of whom helped to enhance the shopping experience for the families.

Roughly 35 individuals, including 27 children and young adults, were served at this year’s event. Each of our young community members was given a budget of around $100 and was encouraged to spend the money however they wished. Powerfully, most of the kids were more interested in purchasing items for their family members than they were for themselves.

The Kirkland Police Guild’s Shop with a Cop event was founded in 2019 by Corporal Doug Dreher as a way to increase positive interactions between KPD and the community. The event occurred again in 2020 but was dramatically restructured to accommodate pandemic-related limitations. When Corporal Dreher left the Kirkland Police Department for a different agency earlier this year, Detectives Russ Kaufman and Christa Gilland chose to continue his legacy by taking over the event.

As detectives in the Department’s Family Violence Unit, Kaufman and Gilland’s work is directly tied to the welfare of children and families, making them a natural fit to oversee Shop with a Cop. The two worked with KPD’s School Resource Officers, Patrol Officers and other department staff who referred children and families as potential recipients for the event. Each shopping spree was supported through generous donations by members of the Kirkland Police Department, the Kirkland Police Guild, and funds that were carried over from last year.

A total of $3,800 was raised and dedicated to the event.

“Shop with a Cop is incredibly rewarding for everyone involved, and we are honored to pick up where Corporal Dreher left off,” Kaufman said. “Events like this help us build vital connections with the community we serve every day. We are grateful for the widespread support of this event.”

Built out of a desire to meaningfully connect with the community, Shop with a Cop attracts attention every year due to its visually striking nature. Other shoppers sometimes pause in their tracks as the officers, dressed in full uniform, follow the whims of their new young friends, patiently pushing shopping carts up and down the toy aisles while taking time to bond, engage and help them choose gifts.

This year, some shoppers made impromptu donations on the spot, compelled by the connections clearly being fostered between community members and cops. Those donations will be used to sustain and grow the event in future years and are greatly appreciated.

This year’s event was particularly meaningful for the volunteers involved, as KPD officers welcomed Wyatt, Tucker and Bowen Gavigan, the three young sons of former KPD mechanic Kenny Gavigan. Gavigan passed away on May 22, 2021 and is sorely missed by his KPD family. His colleagues knew him to be an exceptional human being and an incredibly intuitive mechanic. The garage at KPD has been unofficially named ‘Gavigan’s Garage’ in his honor.
The City would like to thank the Kirkland Fred Meyer for providing a safe space for the event to take place, along with hot coffee and tasty baked treats. Fred Meyer has been a true community partner in its willingness to support Kirkland’s Shop with a Cop.

“Seeing all the officers come over every holiday season to help out the kids and families is really special,” said Fred Meyer Electronics Manager Kevin Parrish. “It means a lot to the store and to the rest of our community.”

Seeking Input on the Draft City of Kirkland Native History Document

Kirkland Native History DocumentAs part of the City’s efforts around Resolution R-5434, the City has composed a hyper-local Native history of Kirkland in collaboration with local tribal leaders and Native experts and in consultation with a variety of historical sources. This document will serve as a guide to the City to make informed choices on practices, policies, official documents and public signage. Additionally, as part of the historical document, the City Council has adopted a formal local land acknowledgement.

The City Council is anticipated to vote to approve the Kirkland Native History Document in early 2022. To inform the Council's decision, the City seeks community feedback on this draft. Please read the draft document and provide feedback by visiting the City’s website.

Totem Lake Pedestrian Bridge Update

Totem Lake Connector BridgeIronworker Cody Bates, left, foreman Jason Timmons, center, and ironworker DeWayne Daniels, right, level the Totem Lake Connector’s Overlook feature before hoisting it to the Y pier.

“It’s a bit of a guessing game,” said Darren Harder, Kraemer North America’s superintendent for the Totem Lake Connector bridge project. “We will fine-tune it once it’s up there. We just gotta get it close while it’s still on the ground.”

A cantilever system will support the 20-foot-long Overlook, which will offer its passengers sweeping views of the Totem Lake wetlands.

When completed in late 2022, the Totem Lake Connector pedestrian and bicycle bridge will connect the two ends of the Cross Kirkland Corridor currently severed by Northeast 124th Street and Totem Lake Boulevard.

For more information about the Totem Lake Connector, visit:

Support Local Businesses and Win

Kirkland Green Trip is partnering with Shop Local Kirkland to encourage the use of alternative transportation (walking, biking, riding transit) while supporting small businesses in Kirkland during the pandemic. You can choose your own adventure or check out the Shop Local Kirkland website to explore your city while supporting small businesses. Participate to win a $50 gift card to a Kirkland restaurant or our end-of-year grand prize of $250 to a local business! For more information and contest rules visit Kirkland Green Trips website.

Green Trips and Shop Local Kirkland

Traffic Alerts

124th Avenue Northeast – North Rose Hill

Franchised utility operators, such as Ziply and Comcast, are continuing to relocate their utilities this week along 124th Avenue Northeast, between Northeast 116th and 124th streets. Crews are working from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. 

After Ziply relocates its fiber optic lines, other utility operators, such as Comcast, will begin relocating their utilities through February.

The City of Kirkland is coordinating the utility relocations as part of its ambitious effort to improve the 124th Avenue Northeast corridor.


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. The Totem Lake Connector is expected to be complete in winter 2022. 

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Northeast 120th Street – North Rose Hill

Drivers traveling Northeast 120th Street between Slater Avenue and the Lake Washington Institute of Technology may encounter minor traffic delays while the contractor works to complete the surface water project. The contractor expects to finish the project by the end of December.


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 through January. 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 November, 2022. 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 at I-405 – Juanita/Kingsgate

The Washington State Department of Transportation’s contractor, Graham Contracting Ltd., expects to be on-site intermittently to prepare the site for a series of land surveys.

Drivers may experience lane-shifts and potential lane-closures on Northeast 132nd Street from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Upcoming Events

Day of Service MLK Day Event  

Join the Green Kirkland Partnership for a day of stewardship on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. day | Monday, January 17th, 2022

Green Kirkland has three events looking for volunteers and teams to help plant trees, pull invasive weeds, and nurture Kirkland’s parks in celebration of Dr. King’s legacy of community service.

All tools and training provided. All ages welcome following the youth volunteer policy on the website.

Please bring a face covering (mask) to wear anytime when social distancing is not possible at these outdoor events.

Pre-registration is requested from participants.

Follow the links below to register and learn more.

Stewardship Events on MLK Day – Monday, January 17, 2022

This event is hosted by the Green Kirkland Partnership and City of Kirkland Parks and Community Services Department.

Shop Local Kirkland