This Week: Council Recap | Return Your Ballots | KFD Water Rescue | Back to School Block Party

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this week in kirkland

July 20, 2023

city of kirkland washington

City Council Meeting Recap

Council Meeting July 18, 2023

The Kirkland City Council met on July 18, 2023, in a hybrid meeting. Here’s a brief overview of some of the items from the meeting: 

The Council received an update on the Capital Improvement Program, including the status of key projects, grant opportunities, and summary of ongoing improvements. Currently, there are 103 projects and over 150 professional service contracts in progress.  

The Council also received an update on Kirkland’s Transportation Benefit District and related investments in Safer Routes to School and Active Transportation Plan projects. 

The Council adopted Ordinance 4857 which submits to the voters for the November 2023 ballot a levy lid lift proposition to expand aquatics, parks, and recreation facilities, operations, and programs. The ordinance also states the City’s intention to build a new aquatics and recreation center, funded separately. 

Council also appointed community members to serve on “pro” and “con” committees to prepare statements in favor of and in opposition to the Parks Ballot Measure  for the General Election Voters’ Pamphlet. 

The Council adopted three ordinances constituting Phase 2 of the NE 85th Station Area Plan. These actions continue to lay the foundation for a transit-oriented, walkable, mixed-use district around the forthcoming bus rapid transit station being built by Sound Transit and WSDOT. The vision of the station area includes high-tech and family wage jobs, affordable housing, park amenities, sustainable buildings, and commercial and retail services. 

Prior to the above business agenda, Council held a joint study session with the Planning Commission starting at 5:30 p.m., where they discussed NE 85th Station Area Plan Phase 2 and Community-Initiated Amendment Requests, followed by a presentation and discussion with staff on the 2044 Comprehensive Plan update process.  

How to watch: Kirkland City Council meetings are streamed live and can be watched after the fact 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.     

To watch the Council discussions on the specific agenda items outlined above, visit the City’s website. The full agenda packet with information on each item is located on the City’s website.      

The next City Council meeting is on Wednesday, August 2, 2023. 

Council Places Ballot Measure to Expand Aquatics, Parks, and Recreation Programs Before Voters

Aquatics, parks, and recreation programs

During its July 18, 2023, meeting, the Kirkland City Council acted on the recommendations of the Parks Funding Exploratory Committee and placed before Kirkland voters the option to expand aquatics, parks, and recreation facilities, operations, and programs.

“Last year, the City Council convened 45 Kirkland residents from all walks of life to advise the Council on whether to place a ballot measure before the voters,” said Councilmember Kelli Curtis.  “This thoughtful and innovative group – the Parks Funding Exploratory Committee – met from September to June and concluded new investments in our parks system were needed now, and that voters should be given the choice in November of 2023.  After months of deliberation, the City Council has acted on PFEC’s recommendations and has placed before Kirkland voters a comprehensive measure to expand aquatics, parks, and recreation facilities, operations, and programs in November.”

On July 18, the City Council adopted Ordinance O-4857, which responds to the needs and priorities identified by the community for accelerated investment in expanded aquatics, parks, and recreation facilities.  This ordinance builds on the input received from over 4,700 community members during the 2022 PROS Plan process, 45 community members who constituted the Parks Funding Exploratory Committee, the Kirkland Park Board, and the Kirkland Youth Council.

Read the full news release on the City's website.

This Week’s Headlines

Houghton Beach Closed

Houghton Beach Swimming Closed Due to Elevated Bacteria Levels 

The Houghton Beach swimming area is closed for at least one week due to elevated bacteria levels per the recommendation of Public Heath – Seattle & King County. People and pets should not swim, drink lake water, or engage in other water activities at Houghton Beach. Read more.  

KPD logo

KPD Arrest Results in Conviction for Controlled Substances Homicide 

An arrest by the Kirkland Police Department of a suspected drug dealer results in a conviction for Controlled Substance Homicide – only the second conviction of this kind in King County. Read more

KPD Looking for Identity Theft Suspect Who Fled from Police 

Kirkland Police Department is looking for an individual who fled from a traffic stop on Wednesday night, July 12. The suspect was in a stolen vehicle and believed to be under the influence. Read more 


Kirkland Firefighters Train for Water Safety

Kirkland Fire KFD Trains on Water Rescue Craft WRC

Kirkland has 12 miles of shoreline and a community that loves water activities, so water rescue is a big part of training for the Kirkland Fire Department (KFD). Twice a year KFD’s water rescue team of about 65 firefighters trains on Water Rescue Craft (WRC) to ensure the safety of summer water activities. Their training includes rescuing conscious and unconscious victims, maneuvering the WRC safely, using a rescue sled, searching at night, and underwater victim searches.

Kirkland has been conducting rescue operations with WRC since 2015. KFD recently acquired new WRC outfitted with inflatable sponsors, heavy duty bumpers, GPS, lights, rescue sleds, helmets with communication and more. This specialized water craft enables KFD to expand its rescue efforts further offshore and greatly improve communication among everyone involved in a rescue.

The most common response for the water rescue team involves people who become overwhelmed while on the lake, such as a kiteboarder overcome by conditions. WRC crews have also responded to boat collisions, seaplanes crashes, derelict vessels, boat fires, motorcycles off bridges, and much more. 

Advice from KFD’s water rescue team: be safe on the water by wearing a lifejacket, know the weather before you head out and always pay attention.  

Return Your Ballots by August 1

Voting Ballot Box City Hall

Reminder to get your ballots in! Ballots are due August 1 at 8 p.m. sharp for the King County Primary Election.  

Kirkland has two ballot drop boxes:  

  • City Hall located at 123 5th Ave and   
  • Kingsgate Library located at 12315 NE 143rd St.  

Drop boxes close August 1 at 8 p.m. sharp!  

To learn about candidates and measures, view your voter registration information, and to track your ballot, visit King County Elections. 

For questions and assistance, contact King County elections at or (206) 296-VOTE (8683). 

Eastside Back to School Block Party

Communities in School Block Party 2023

Mark your calendars for a Back to School Block Party at Juanita High School on August 26 from 1 – 3 p.m. 

Join the party and get ready for the new school year! Get a free haircut, backpack, and school supplies while supplies last, thanks to a partnership with Communities in School Renton and Lake Washington School District. 

Want to help and have the means to donate? Contribute to the Backpack Drive accepting donations now – August 15. Highest need items include mechanical pencils, notebooks, markers, colored pencils, and more. To learn more or to donate, reach out to Communities in Schools Renton at or (425) 278-8582. 

Now Open for Enjoyment: 132nd Square Park

132nd Square Park Opening Ribbon Cutting

Thank you to the more than 400 community members who helped us re-open 132nd Square Park last Saturday! After the ribbon-cutting by the City Council and Park Board, folks explored the park’s new features, including the new synthetic turf multi-use field, new playground with zipline, meditative labyrinth, and reflexology walking path. Learn more about the park redevelopment at 

Still Time to Apply for an Event Grant

Explore Kirkland Outdoor Concert

Your event could be the next treasured Kirkland event. Appy for grant funding from the 2024 Explore Kirkland tourism grant program by Monday, July 24!    

This program has previously awarded funding to several Kirkland events including the Junior Softball World Series, Kirkland Summerfest, Kirkland Uncorked, Kirkland Oktoberfest, Lake Washington Half Marathon, and many more.  

Learn more and apply on the Tourism Funding webpage.   

Traffic Alerts

Rendering of WSDOT NE 85th St and I-405 Interchange and Transit project

I-405/NE 85th St Interchange and Inline BRT Station Project 

Change is coming to the NE 85th St and I-405 area, and WSDOT breaks ground on a new construction project this August. Join WSDOT for an online meeting from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 27 to learn and ask questions about the I-405/NE 85th St Interchange and Inline BRT Station Project. Read more and register:     

I-405/NE 132nd St Interchange project area   

This summer, crews will continue installing sanitary sewer line and fish culverts within the I-405/NE 132nd St Interchange project area. This work will require some temporary lane and road closures throughout the summer as well as a shift of traffic lanes along Northeast 132nd Street to the south. Details for each of the temporary traffic changes can be found on the Interchange Project WSDOT webpage.    

  • Totem Lake Blvd NE will be reduced to one lane during the day on weekdays   
  • Closure of Totem Lake Blvd NE at NE 132nd St in late July   
  • Traffic and pedestrian route shifts along NE 132nd St, 116th Ave NE and Totem Lake Blvd NE starting in late July 

Upcoming Events

Juanita Friday Market This Week at the Market

Juanita Friday Market 

Date: Friday, July 21 

Time: 3 p.m. - 7 p.m. 

Location: Juanita Beach Park 

Sign-up at our Information Booth for August 11 Cooking Demos using market produce as part of National Farmers Market Week! Entertainment sponsored by Parkshore Juanita Bay: The Silverbacks from 5 - 7 p.m. Busy Lil Bees Kids Booth sponsored by Kirkland Kids Dentistry will have a scavenger hunt and hand-crafted fans. See you at the Juanita Friday Market! 

Park Ranger patch

Park Ranger Kiosk in the Park 

Date: Saturday, July 22 

Time: 12 - 1 p.m. 

Location: Heritage Park 

Meet your community Park Rangers and learn about how pets can be safely in our parks, how to license your pet, and other handy park information. 

See more info about our Park Ranger Program. 

Outdoor Summer Movies July 22, 2023

Outdoor Summer Movie Series  

Date: Saturdays in July   

Time: 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. showings  

Location: Juanita Beach Park, 9703 NE Juanita Beach Dr. 

Kick off summer with movies outside! Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy a FREE double feature on our giant LED movie screen. 

On Saturday, July 22 we will be showing Sing 2 and Grease at Juanita Beach Park.  

The movies will start at 6 p.m. & 8 p.m. Don’t forget to bring your snacks!  

Outdoor Summer Movie Series sponsored by Ziplyfiber.  

For more information, please visit or call 425-587-3330. 

2023 National Night Out

National Night Out (NNO)

Date: Tuesday, August 1 

Location: Your Block!  

NNO is an annual campaign that promotes police and community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie. Communities in all fifty states participate by hosting block parties, festivals, cookouts and other events with safety demonstrations, kids’ events and more. NNO is a great way to meet and chat with Kirkland’s police officers, firefighters or City Councilmembers.   

For more information visit:   

For more events from the City, visit our Community Events page. For up to date happenings around Kirkland, visit 

Want a monthly Events Guide delivered to your inbox? Sign up for our Events Newsletter 

Video Spotlight - Summer Water Safety

Learn about steps you can take to be safe in, on, or around waterfronts this summer. Tune in to hear from experts in our Office of Emergency Management, Fire Department, and Parks Aquatic Program. 

Let’s Chat Water Safety Pool Staff with Safety Tips