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On June 28, 2022, Hearing Examiner Sharon A. Rice issued a written decision on the Snoqualmie factory site Planned Commercial/Industrial Plan (PCI). It confirmed the adequacy of the Final Environmental Impact Assessment (FEIS) associated with the plan and recommended that Snoqualmie Town Council approve the PCI plan for the plant site.

Additionally, the written decision dismissed an appeal from the associated SIEF, stating that the appellant’s case failed to demonstrate that the SIEF’s original suitability determination was clearly erroneous on all counts.

As a Hearing Examiner, Ms. Rice – lawyer and land use expert – acted as an impartial expert 3rd party whose role was to provide a formal recommendation to the city council on the PCI plan and determine the adequacy of the project’s SIEF, ensuring it adheres to local ordinances, applicable state law, and adheres to Washington State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) rules.

Over several days in late March and early April, Ms Rice heard hours of public comment on the PCI plan for the plant site, as well as legal testimony and evidence regarding an appeal of the adequacy of the associated SIEF.

About the factory site project: The private project is proposed for the 261-acre former Weyerhaeuser mill site near downtown Snoqualmie and is owned by Snoqualmie Mill Ventures, LLC. The proposed project site does not include nearby Mill Pond/Borst Lake, which Weyerhaeuser still owns.

The majority of the property – approximately two-thirds of the project site – is expected to remain open space with natural areas, habitat and flood storage. The redeveloped portion of the property is expected to take place in three stages.

Planning Zone 1 would focus on wine production and storage, redeveloping this area with a mix of light industrial, commercial/retail and warehouse buildings along a pedestrianized main street with tasting rooms and restaurants.

It would also include 160 multi-family housing units located on the upper floors of mixed-use buildings.

Figure 1 Plant site planning areas. Green spaces are planned open spaces. Zone 1 is the first area proposed for redevelopment. The nearby Mill Pond/Borst Lake is NOT part of the property and is still owned by Weyerhaeuser.

It is proposed that Planning Zones 2 and 3 be staggered over the next 10 to 15 years.

Next steps: The Snoqualmie Town Council will review the planned commercial/industrial plan for the plant site and related development agreement this summer. The next steps include building and infrastructure permit applications, which are required before any construction begins.

Mayor Katherine Ross commented, “We are pleased with the hearing reviewer’s decision, confirming our staff’s determination as to the suitability of the extensive and complex environmental impact assessment for the ownership of the plant site. This project will revitalize this long vacant property, improve the environment, create jobs and positively benefit our local economy.

View the Hearing Examiner’s full written decision HERE.

To learn more about the proposed Snoqualmie Mill Site Project, Mill Site PCI Plan, and associated FEIS, visit: https://www.snoqualmiewa.gov/888/Snoqualmie-Mill-Site .

[Information provided by the City of Snoqualmie]