Economic Vitality & Town Center Task Force

Task Force, 2018
Members appointed to the Economic Vitality & Town Center Task Force include Steve Cox (Chair), Adam Bettcher (Vice Chair), Ronald Skinner, Sarah Bayle, Jerry Osborn, Linda Rogers, Victor Eskenazi, Joe Mustach, Wade Heyer, Marie Landsverk and Mike Lavigne. Councilmembers Doug McCardle and Laura Sonmore will serve as City Council liaisons.

2018 Upcoming Meetings

Meeting Dates Time Location
Monday, December 17, 2018 - Joint Meeting with City Council and Planning Commission​ 6:00pm Mountlake Terrace
​Library
Tuesday, December 12, 2018 - Meeting #11 6:00pm Interim City Hall, City Council Chambers
Tuesday, December 4, 2018 - Public Open House 6:00pm Mountlake Terrace
​Library
Tuesday, November 27, 2018 - Meeting #10 6:00pm Interim City Hall, City Council Chambers
Tuesday, November 6, 2018 - Meeting #9 6:00pm Interim City Hall, City Council Chambers

2018 Past Meetings

Past Meeting Dates  
Tuesday, November 6, 2018 - Meeting #9 View Meeting Materials
Tuesday, October 23, 2018 – Meeting #8 View Meeting Materials
Tuesday, October 9, 2018 – Meeting #7
Thursday, September 6, 2018 – Meeting #6 View Meeting Materials
Thursday, July 12, 2018 – Town Center Economic Development Opportunities Panel ​(City Council, Planning Commission, and Task Force) View Meeting Materials
Tuesday, June 26, 2018 – Meeting #5 View Meeting Materials
Tuesday, June 12, 2018 – Meeting #4 View Meeting Materials
Wednesday, May 30, 2018 – Meeting #3 View Meeting Materials
Tuesday, May 15, 2018 – Public Workshop
Thursday, April 26, 2018 – Meeting #2 View Meeting Materials
​Tuesday, April 10, 2018 – Meeting #1 View Meeting Materials

June-December, 2018 Meeting Recaps

October 26, 2018 – Town Center Subarea Plan and Development Regulations: During the October 15 City Council meeting, the Assistant City Manager and Community Economic Development Director presented an update on the Town Center Subarea Plan and Development Regulations. During the presentation, they mentioned that to date, an open house, Economic Development Opportunities Panel discussion and seven Task Force meetings have been held, the most recent of which took place on October 9.

Regarding next steps, draft updates to the Town Center Subarea Plan and related documents will need to be prepared and submitted to the Task Force for review. Revisions by the Task Force are likely to be made or proposed and a public open house will need to be held to allow the public an opportunity to review proposals and provide comments or feedback. A revised draft extended schedule has been provided to Task Force members that includes additional meeting dates.

One idea shared on October 15 is the possibility of hosting a joint Planning Commission and City Council work session in mid-December. The purpose of this meeting is to have SCJ introduce Task Force recommended updates to the City Council and Planning Commission at the same time. This will give the Council and Commission more time to review information prior to additional Commission and Council workshops and public hearings being held in January and February of 2019.
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October 19, 2018 – Town Center Subarea Plan and Development Regulations: During the October 15 City Council meeting, the Assistant City Manager and Community Economic Development Director presented an update on the Town Center Subarea Plan and Development Regulations. During the presentation, they mentioned that to date, an open house, Economic Development Opportunities Panel discussion and seven Task Force meetings have been held, the most recent of which took place on October 9.

Regarding next steps, draft updates to the Town Center Subarea Plan and related documents will need to be prepared and submitted to the Task Force for review. Revisions by the Task Force are likely to be made or proposed and a public open house will need to be held to allow the public an opportunity to review proposals and provide comments or feedback. A revised draft extended schedule has been provided to Task Force members that includes additional meeting dates.

One idea shared on October 15 is the possibility of hosting a joint Planning Commission and City Council work session in mid-December. The purpose of this meeting is to have SCJ introduce Task Force recommended updates to the City Council and Planning Commission at the same time. This will give the Council and Commission more time to review information prior to additional Planning Commission and Council workshops and public hearings being held in January and February of 2019.

NOTE: The October 23 Task Force Meeting is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. in the City Council Chambers. The Task Force Meeting agenda includes the following items:
• Summary of Visual Preference Survey Rating from October 9
• Visual Tour of Selected Town Center Development Districts
• Preferred Design Themes: Buildings, Streetscapes, Landscaping
• Reaffirming Guiding Principles
October 12, 2018 – Economic Vitality & Town Center (EV&TC) Task Force: A meeting took place on October 9, 2018 to discuss possible updates to the Town Center. The agenda included the following items:
• Welcome: Meeting purpose and future steps in the Town Center planning process
• Visual Preference Exercise
    o Building form
    o Open Spaces
    o Streetscapes and Plazas
    o Landscaping
• Discussion of zoning districts based on design preferences
• Next Meeting Tasks.

Due to time constraints, the topic “Discussion of zoning districts based on design preferences” did not take place and will be moved to a future agenda item.

Regarding future steps and due to the holidays approaching, a draft EV&TC Task Force Meeting Schedule and Agenda was handed out to provide an overview or long term outlook of future Task Force meetings and related agenda items.
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September 28, 2018

Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force: A sixth Economic Vitality &Town Center Task Force meeting was held on September 6. During the meeting, a number of items were discussed and presented such as:
o Previous Task Force comments, issues, and consensus
o Public comments from May 15 open house
o Community Attributes Report Findings (April 2018)
o Panelists’ comments and observations from the July 12, 2018 event.
o Conceptual Land Use Concepts A and B
o Task Force discussion and creation of draft Preliminary Town Center Land Use Concept

• Town Center Subarea Plan and Development Regulations: During a recent City Council work session, the possibility of setting up additional Town Center Task Force meetings was discussed. The primary purpose would be to further discuss the concept identified by the Task Force on September 6 as well as other items needed in order to move towards hosting an open house and eventually the preparation of a Task Force recommendation.

City staff are working on an amended schedule and agenda(s). They will be notifying the Task Force about the idea to schedule additional meetings and then discussing additional tasks/timeline during that meeting.
August 31, 2018 – Economic Vitality and Town Center (EV&TC) Task Force Meeting #6: A couple of adjustments to the process have been made following the panel discussion and we have been working to obtain and generate additional information related to updating the Town Center Plan, Economic Vitality Strategy and Codes/Standards.

Due to Labor Day this Monday and moving the Council meeting to Tuesday, the next EV&TC Task Force meeting will be on Thursday, September 6 at 6 p.m. in the interim City Hall Council Chambers. During the meeting, the Task Force will discuss draft maps depicting conceptual land use scenarios, building heights, general land use districts, and street/pedestrian grid/connections. Development incentives will also be discussed.
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July 20, 2018 – Town Center Task Force: The city reached out to real estate professionals, developers, economic development professionals, and architects as part of creating a panel discussion to talk about economic development and opportunities. Four individuals from varied backgrounds accepted an invitation to participate on the panel and about 30 people attended the meeting. The event took place on July 12 in the Mountlake Terrace Council Chambers and the topics discussed included what these professions take into consideration when identifying development opportunities, planning and implementing projects, facilitating economic vitality, and creating livable and lively environments.

The meeting began with a brief introduction of each speaker. Panelists included Chris Fiori, Principal and Project Director of Heartland LLC; Bob Tiscareno, AIA, Design Principal and Founder of Tiscareno Associates; Joe Ferguson, Co-founder and principal of Lake Union Partners; and Brynn Estelle Telkamp, Designated Broker and Retail Brokerage Consultant with BeRetail. This was followed by the speakers providing opening remarks, a question and answer session, and open discussion. 
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July 13, 2018 – Town Center Task Force: The City of Mountlake Terrace reached out to real estate professionals, developers, economic development professionals, and architects as part of creating a panel discussion to talk about economic development and opportunities. Four individuals from varied backgrounds accepted an invitation to participate on the panel. The event took place on July 12 in the Mountlake Terrace Council Chambers and the topics discussed included what these professions take into consideration when identifying development opportunities, planning and implementing projects, facilitating economic vitality, and creating livable and lively environments.

The meeting began with a brief introduction of each speaker. Panelists included Chris Fiori, Principal and Project Director of Heartland LLC; Bob Tiscareno, AIA, Design Principal and Founder of Tiscareno Associates; Joe Ferguson, Co-founder and principal of Lake Union Partners; and Brynn Estelle Telkamp, Designated Broker and Retail Brokerage Consultant with BeRetail. This was followed by the speakers providing opening remarks, a question and answer session, and open discussion. 
July 6, 2018 – July 12 Town Center Panel Discussion: As noted above under City Council meetings, the City Council, Planning Commission and Economic Vitality & Town Center Task Force invite the community to attend a Town Center Economic Development Opportunities Panel on Thursday, July 12 at 6:00 p.m. The panel discussion is the first item on the City Council’s work/study session and the meeting will be noted as a special meeting due to the 6:00 start time.
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June 8, 2018 – Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force: The next Economic Vitality Strategy and Town Center Task Force meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 12, 2018 starting at 6:00 p.m. in the Mountlake Terrace City Council Chambers (6100 – 219th Street SW, Suite 220). The public is encouraged to attend.

The purpose of this planning effort is to identify and develop recommended updates to the City’s Economic Vitality Strategy, development codes and Town Center Subarea Plan to support and encourage the types of development desired by the community with a specific focus on the Town Center Subarea. The goal of the series of meetings is to obtain input from the community to help SCJ Alliance prepare recommendations on, and City Council appointed Town Center Task Force assist with the development of, potential updates to these strategies, codes and plan.

The Task Force and SCJ Alliance will also conduct a meeting on August 8, an open house on August 21 and submit recommendations to the Planning Commission and City Council for their consideration before the end of 2018. Everyone is encouraged to participate in the discussion about the future of the community and the Town Center area.

For more information about the Economic Vitality and Town Center planning process, please visit the city’s website at www.cityofmlt.com/1936 or contact Community and Economic Development at (425)744-6281.
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June 1, 2018 – Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force: Over the next several months, the Task Force and SCJ Alliance will conduct two more meetings, an open house and submit recommendations to the Planning Commission for their consideration and recommendation to the City Council before the end of 2018. Everyone is encouraged to participate in the discussion about the future of the community and the Town Center area. The next Economic Vitality Strategy and Town Center Task Force meeting #4 will be held on June 12, 2018 at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers of Mountlake Terrace City Hall (6100 – 219th Street SW, Suite 220); all meetings are open to the public. For more information about the Economic Vitality and Town Center planning process, please visit the city’s website at www.cityofmlt.com/1936 or contact Community and Economic Development at (425)744-6207.

Comprehensive Plans and their related elements are designed to be reviewed on a periodic basis by the community to assess the goals and visions contained within the plans and make adjustments to reflect changes for the future. The Town Center Subarea Plan was adopted over ten years ago and the city and region have experienced many changes over the last several years, including the approval to extend Sound Transit’s light rail line northward into Snohomish County; a Mountlake Terrace Rail Station, located at 236th and Interstate 5, is scheduled to be operational in 2024.

January-May, 2018 Meeting Recaps

May 25, 2018 – Economic Vitality and Town Center Workshop Focus on Future of Mountlake Terrace: Over 40 people attended a public workshop on the Economic Vitality Strategy and Town Center at the Mountlake Terrace Library May 15. The purpose of this planning effort is to identify and develop recommended updates to the City’s Economic Vitality Strategy, development codes and Town Center Subarea Plan to support and encourage the types of development desired by the community with a specific focus on the Town Center Subarea. The goal of the workshop was to obtain input from the community to help SCJ Alliance prepare recommendations for review by the Town Center Task Force on potential updates to these strategies, codes and plan.

Over the next several months, SCJ Alliance and the Task Force will conduct three more meetings, an open house and submit recommendations to the Planning Commission and City Council for their consideration before the end of 2018. Everyone is encouraged to participate in the discussion about the future of the community and the Town Center area. The next Economic Vitality Strategy and Town Center Task Force meeting will be held on May 30, 2018 in the Council Chambers of Mountlake Terrace City Hall (6100 – 219th Street SW, Suite 220); all meetings are open to the public. For more information about the Economic Vitality and Town Center planning process, please visit the city’s website at www.cityofmlt.com/1936 or contact Community and Economic Development at (425)744-6207.

Comprehensive Plans and their related elements are designed to be reviewed on a periodic basis by the community to assess the goals and visions contained within the plans and make adjustments to reflect changes for the future. The Town Center Subarea Plan was adopted over ten years ago and the city and region have experienced many changes over the last several years….including the approval to extend Sound Transit’s light rail line northward into Snohomish County; a Mountlake Terrace Rail Station, located at 236th and Interstate 5, is scheduled to be operational in 2024.
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May 18, 2018 – Economic Vitality and Town Center Workshop Focus on Future of Mountlake Terrace: Over 40 people attended a public workshop on the Economic Vitality Strategy and Town Center at the Mountlake Terrace Library this week. The purpose of this planning effort is to identify and develop recommended updates to the City’s Economic Vitality Strategy, development codes and Town Center Subarea Plan to support and encourage the types of development desired by the community with a specific focus on the Town Center Subarea. The goal of the May 15 workshop was to obtain input from the community to help SCJ Alliance prepare recommendations for review by the Town Center Task Force on potential updates to these strategies, codes and plan.

Comprehensive Plans and their related elements are designed to be reviewed on a periodic basis by the community to assess the goals and visions contained within the plans and make adjustments to reflect changes for the future. The Town Center Subarea Plan was adopted over ten years ago and the city and region have experienced many changes over the last several years….including the approval to extend Sound Transit’s light rail line northward into Snohomish County; a Mountlake Terrace Rail Station, located at 236th and Interstate 5, is scheduled to be operational in 2024.

Over the next several months, SCJ Alliance and the Task Force will conduct three more meetings, an open house and submit recommendations to the Planning Commission and City Council for their consideration before the end of 2018. Everyone is encouraged to participate in the discussion about the future of the community and the Town Center area. The next Economic Vitality Strategy and Town Center Task Force meeting will be held on May 30, 2018 in the Council Chambers of Mountlake Terrace City Hall; all meetings are open to the public. For more information contact (425) 744-6207.
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May 11, 2018 – Public Workshop on Economic Vitality and Town Center Planning:
A Public Workshop is planned for Tuesday, May 15, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Mountlake Terrace Library to obtain input from the community on potential updates to the city’s Town Center Subarea Plan and Economic Vitality Element of the Comprehensive Plan.

Comprehensive Plans are designed to be reviewed on a periodic basis by the community to assess the goals and visions contained in the plan and make changes to reflect changes for the future. The city has experienced many changes over the last several years and is planning for future changes including the pending Sound Transit light rail station, and interest in Mountlake Terrace as an attractive and affordable place to live and work.

The Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force appointed by the City Council will be working over the next several months to discuss the wants and needs of residents and business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force will make recommendations on updates to existing codes and standards to the Planning Commission and City Council to consider by the end of this year.

Everyone is encouraged to participate in the discussion about the future of the community and the Town Center area. For more information about the Economic Vitality and Town Center planning process contact (425) 744-6207.
May 4, 2018 – Public Workshop on Economic Vitality and Town Center Planning: A Public Workshop is planned for Tuesday, May 15, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Mountlake Terrace Library to obtain input from the community on potential updates to the city’s Town Center Subarea Plan and Economic Vitality Element of the Comprehensive Plan.

It has been over ten years since the Town Center Subarea Plan was adopted. An evaluation of possible changes to the plan and development standards are anticipated. Comprehensive Plan are designed to be reviewed on a periodic basis by the community to assess the goals and visions contained in the plan and make changes to reflect changes for the future. The city has experienced many changes over the last several years and is planning for future changes including the pending Sound Transit light rail station, and interest in Mountlake Terrace as an attractive and affordable place to live and work.

The Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force appointed by the City Council will be working over the next several months to discuss the wants and needs of residents and business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force will make recommendations on updates to existing codes and standards to the Planning Commission and City Council to consider by the end of this year.

Everyone is encouraged to participate in the discussion about the future of the community and the Town Center area. For more information about the Economic Vitality and Town Center planning process contact (425) 744-6207.
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April 27, 2018 – Council Appoints the Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force:
On April 2 the City Council appointed eleven individuals to serve on the Economic Vitality & Town Center Task Force to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009) and the city’s Economic Vitality Strategy.

The Task Force’s first meeting was held Tuesday, April 10. Task Force members were given a notebook with the background information and reviewed the history of the Town Center Plan. The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development.

Over the next several months, the Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider. Consideration of possible changes to the plan could include expanding the Town Center core, increases in building height and residential density, and additional incentives to encourage redevelopment. Any changes would require amendments to Town Center development regulations and building and site design standards to implement plan updates as well as amendments to the city’s Comprehensive Plan.

The City Council invites everyone to participate in the process and provide input for the updated plan. For more information about the Town Center Plan, please contact (425) 744-6207.
April 20, 2018 – Council Appoints the Economic Vitality and Town Center Task Force: On April 2 the City Council appointed eleven individuals to serve on the Economic Vitality & Town Center Task Force to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009) and the City’s Economic Vitality Strategy. Their next meeting will be on April 26 at 6:00 p.m. at Mountlake Terrace City Hall Council Chambers.

The Task Force’s first meeting was held Tuesday, April 10. Task Force members were given a notebook with the background information and reviewed the history of the Town Center Plan. The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development.

Over the next several months, the Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider. Consideration of possible changes to the plan could include expanding the Town Center core, increases in building height and residential density, and additional incentives to encourage redevelopment. Any changes would require amendments to Town Center development regulations and building and site design standards to implement plan updates as well as amendments to the city’s Comprehensive Plan.

City Council invites everyone to participate in the process and provide input for the updated plan. For more information about the Town Center Plan, contact (425) 744-6207.
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April 6, 2018:
At their April 2 meeting, the City Council appointed eleven individuals to serve on an 11-member Town Center Task Force. The purpose of this Task Force is to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009). The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development.

The Task Force’s first meeting will be held at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 10 in the Council Chambers at Interim City Hall. Over the next several months, the Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider.
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March 30, 2018:
Members of the City Council interviewed applicants on March 22 and 27 to serve on an 11-member Town Center Task Force. The purpose of this Task Force is to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009). The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider. A resolution to appoint the members of the Task Force is scheduled for consideration at the April 2 City Council meeting and was reviewed at the March 29 work/study session.
March 23, 2018: Members of the City Council are interviewing applicants this week and next to serve on an 11-member Town Center Task Force. The purpose of this Task Force is to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009). The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider. Appointment of the Task Force is anticipated to take place at the April 2 City Council meeting.
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March 16, 2018:
The City Council will be interviewing applicants to serve on an 11-member Town Center Task Force. The purpose of this Task Force is to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009). The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider.
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March 9, 2018:
The City Council is discussing the interview process for candidates who applied to serve on an 11-member Town Center Task Force. The purpose of this Task Force is to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center Plan (amended in 2009). The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider.
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March 3, 2018:
The city received 11 applications for appointment to the Town Center Task Force by the 5:00 p.m. deadline on February 28. Following an interview process, the City Council will appoint six members to the Task Force; the remaining five positions are to be identified by the CLEAR group.

The purpose of the Task Force is to assist in the development of an update to the 2007 Town Center plan (amended in 2009). The Task Force will serve to bring the community together to discuss the wants and needs of residents and Mountlake Terrace business owners and balance them with development feasibility to help generate economic development. The Task Force is expected to make recommendations for updates to existing codes and standards for the Planning Commission and City Council to consider.

February 23, 2018: The Mountlake Terrace City Council seeks interested residents, property owners and business owners to serve on a Town Center Task Force to assist in updating the Town Center Plan. The plan was adopted in 2007 to create a Town Center that reflects the community’s values and identity, and provides a stimulus for growth and redevelopment. The plan was amended in 2009 and can be found on the city’s website at www.cityofmlt.com/documentcenter/view/750.

The original plan gathered the community’s thoughts on what the Town Center should look like in 20 years (2026), and put those thoughts into a vision that was subsequently adopted into Chapter 19.50 (the zoning code for the Town Center) that states “The purpose of this chapter is to provide for a vibrant downtown (or “Town Center”) area where businesses thrive and people of all ages enjoy gathering. A vibrant downtown is pedestrian-oriented, provides efficiently for multiple modes of transportation, and contains a mix of uses, including commercial and residential uses…”

The city has been investing in infrastructure to facilitate the plan. However, due to the slow pace of redevelopment caused by the Great Recession, and few large parcels available for sale, relatively little private development has taken place towards the vision. The city has contracted with SCJ Alliance to update the city’s economic profile, gather community input, and update zoning and/or design standards. In addition, the City Council will be selecting an 11-member Task Force to represent a balance of backgrounds from Mountlake Terrace residents, property owners and business owners that would meet in the evening, about three times per month from mid-March through possibly December with some weekend meetings possible.

As part of the update the city will have extensive community outreach and neighborhood meetings to receive citywide input and answer questions about the Town Center Plan.

Applicants must be current residents of Mountlake Terrace or own a business or property in Mountlake Terrace, at least 18 years of age, and able to attend evening and some weekend meetings in 2018. Ideal candidates will include those familiar with land use, design standards, small business operations or marketing. Individuals interested in serving should submit an application (available online or at City Hall) by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, February 28 to the City of Mountlake Terrace, City Manager’s Office or via email at cityhall@ci.mlt.wa.us.