The ribbon cutting ceremony included, from left, Councilmembers Erin Murray, Laura Sonmore, Rick Ryan and Steve Woodard, along with Mayor Pro Tem Doug McCardle, Mayor Kyoko Matsumoto Wright, U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen, state Rep. Cindy Ryu, state Rep. Davina Duerr and state Rep. Shelley Kloba.
A dedication ceremony was held Saturday to commemorate the new Mountlake Terrace Civic Campus, with attendance limited by COVID-19 precautions.
The outdoor event included community leaders from throughout the city’s history, along with a number of federal, state and regional officials. As recently as last month, the city had anticipated holding a larger community celebration, but that plan was postponed due to the sharp rise in COVID-19 cases.
“We are extremely proud of our new Civic Campus that is welcoming and reflects the residents’ ideas on design and cost,” Mayor Kyoko Matsumoto Wright said. “It has taken more than a decade to get to this point, but the community’s patience has paid off with this beautiful campus.”
The location is home to the new City Hall, the Police Station with its recent addition, the library, and Fire Station 19. Planning is also under way with the community to connect the campus to the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center along accessible, well-lit and paved pathways through Veterans Memorial Park.
Long in the works, the $12.5 million Civic Campus redevelopment project was funded by a 2017 voter-approved bond measure, as well as park impact fees and donations toward the fountain and artwork. Voter support was successful in large part due to the work of the City Hall Advisory Committee, made up of nine residents who worked with the community on the initial project concepts. Public input greatly shaped the size and style of the building, as well as the project layout, scope and cost.
Unfortunately, due to COVID precautions and a list of work remaining for the contractor to complete, City Hall and the Police Station are not yet open to the public, with the exception of appointments related to specific services.
Meanwhile, visitors can delight at the Jerry Smith Town Center Plaza, a public gathering space that honors our beloved former mayor, who passed in 2018. The centerpiece of the plaza is the Hazel Miller Fountain, which recently entered the testing phase, meaning recycled water is flowing! In addition, a series of sculptures showing children at play is already proving popular.
Saturday’s event featured a ribbon cutting and the revealing of two commemorative plaques — one memorializing Mayor Smith and one recognizing the community input, design team and city officials.
Guests were treated to a viewing of a new video showing the city’s history of civic pride and city facilities over the years leading to the new City Hall. The video was created in partnership with MLTNews.com. This video is online at www.cityofmlt.com/1922 and the city’s YouTube, and a video of Saturday’s event will be shared online soon.
The historical video concludes with this message, “Built with civic pride, our new Civic Campus reflects the continued partnership between the residents and their city government. The result is not just a building, but a place to gather, a place to govern, and a place to grow.”