UPDATED: Group sues city over Island Gateway project

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A group calling itself the Friends of Bainbridge Island is suing the city of Bainbridge and the developers of the Island Gateway project.

Filed with the Kitsap Superior Court on Tuesday, the lawsuit alleges that the city failed to follow due process in its approval of the 75,000-square-foot project at the intersection of Highway 305 and Winslow Way.

A key issue is the city’s decision to vacate a portion of a 30-foot right-of-way along the west side of the highway to allow more room for the development.

The group contends that the city’s decision did not adequately take into account the vacation’s impact on traffic safety and future mass transit and regional trail options.

“While the city claims to have considered these factors, the (City) Council’s decision was not supported by substantial evidence, was clearly erroneous and arbitrary and capricious,” the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit claims the city should have consulted with Kitsap Transit and Washington State Ferries to determine if they had objections.

The Island Gateway site is near the Winlsow ferry terminal and across the street from a property Kitsap Transit co-owns with the city.

No members of the group were named in the lawsuit, but a “Friends of Bainbridge Island” was registered as a corporation with the state on Oct. 29. Its members include island residents Annette Skinner, Charles Schmid and Virginia Paul.

Due to a staff furlough, the city’s attorney could not be reached on Friday.

Island Gateway’s developer, Bill Carruthers, did not immediately return phone calls for comment.

The largest development project the island’s seen in years, Island Gateway would include an art museum, children’s museum and about 60,000 square feet of commercial space. It incorporates several sustainable design elements, including salvaged wood and stormwater catchment systems.

Some residents have criticized the development’s size and modern look, saying it clashes with Bainbridge’s small town aesthetic.

10 thoughts on “UPDATED: Group sues city over Island Gateway project

  1. Has this group even checked with the organizations they allege may have objections to the project? Kinda sounds like they are reaching if they are filing a law suit based on what other organizations may think. Mind you, these other organizations did not respond to the public meeting notices or express concerns throughout the process that led to the projects being given the go-ahead. I will wait to see the specifics of the suit to see what the merits may or not be.

    I did find out some of this “Friends of Bainbridge Island” members; Annette Skinner, Charles Schmid, and Virginia Paul. They formed a state corporation on October 28th. Here is a link to the state web site with their corporation information: http://www.secstate.wa.gov/corps/search_detail.aspx?ubi=602965576

  2. Tristan — Find out when the suit was filed. Did the plaintiff exist before the suit was filed? If not, what are the legal implications? Just wondering.

  3. Isn’t Bill Carruthers related to the Judge? Conflict or power-couple?

    This is quintessential As-the-World-Turns BI lawsuits.

    But wait, don’t we have a pent-up demand for more condominiums and amenities?

  4. John,
    If I am following the timeline in the article correctly, it looks like the “friends” became a non-profit corp. the week prior to filing the suit.

  5. Another example of the “tolerance” espoused by our liberal citizens. In other words, we’ll tolerate the things we like and fight the stuff we don’t.

  6. Manchurian Rose — when yoo come clean about Communist DPRNK farce? Who are you? Pregnant newsman or ankle-bite ham reader from BNOTNEWS?

  7. Who wants to know? admirals? Bainbridgeclearcut? CharlieMac64? Comcast customer? Thucidides? RevolutionofBob? James M.Olsen? Shining City Media? Kim Jong-il?

  8. Manchurian Rose — when yoo come clean about Communist DPRNK farce? Who are you? Pregnant newsman or ankle-bite ham reader from BNOTNEWS?

    Did you see that S.Korea blew a DPRNK warship out of the water today on the West Coast of Korea?

    Do you feel threatened?

    What about sleeper cells? Ey, Manchurian Rose?

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