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Point Ruston Updates
The Tacoma City Council has until February 24 to decide whether it is open to the idea of annexing the Ruston side of Point Ruston.
State Lawmakers Weigh In
The City isn't making any decisions just yet, having postponed its vote on a resolution at last week's council meeting that would have accepted the petition. But The News Tribune reports that while officials from the cities of Ruston and Tacoma, the EPA, and the Point Ruston developers are meeting to try to resolve the dispute, state law makers have weighed in. Representative Jake Fey with the support of Laurie Jinkins, David Sawyer, and Steve Kirby, has filed a placeholder bill that could be used to impose a state-level solution if the parties can't sort things out amongst themselves.
Point Ruston backs Fey's HB 2074, which at this point reads in full as follows:
AN ACT Relating to the petition-based annexation method for owners of property within a city or town that seek annexation to another city or town.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. This act shall be known as the petition-based municipality annexation act of 2015.
That's all it says for now, but it's a placeholder that would allow Fey to go back and fill it in if the parties can't come to a workable solution at the local level. It's unclear at this point what the details of the bill would be, but Ruston obviously doesn't like the idea of state-level intervention, and other small municipalities are concerned that a bill on petition-based annexation could affect them as well. Everyone seems to hope that it won't come to that.
Refuse Collection Dock
Meanwhile, Point Ruston has submitted a request to allow it to use a narrow strip of land running between Ruston Way and the BNSF rail lines as a refuse transfer dock. Garbage would be collected from the Point Ruston development and taken to the proposed transfer dock for pick up by Tacoma Solid Waste. This was not included in original master plans and environmental approvals for the development, but Point Ruston contends that since it will serve only Point Ruston, it is accessory to the uses already approved, and should be allowed.
The requested dock would be a concrete slab 220 feet long by 26 feet wide, and no more than 8 feet high, serving as the base for a trash compactor and garbage and recycling bins. The design includes a 6 foot-tall brick and masonry wall separating the facility from Ruston Way with a 5-foot landscaping strip.
If approved, the decision on this is not subject to appeal. Find related documents here.
Century Building Progress
And in case you're wondering how development is progressing, Point Ruston has produced a video of work on the site over the last few months - you can watch the new Century building progress right before your eyes. If you've been following Point Ruston's growth, you know this as the mixed-use building that will house the Century movie theater, along with a few restaurants, below condo units.
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