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Sep 25

Former Wayne Golf Course Update, Jennifer Phillips, Spring 2020

Posted on September 25, 2020 at 10:43 AM by Becky Range

As the weather starts to warm up and days get longer, we’ll start to see more and more people out enjoying our many parks, open spaces, and trails. A favorite place for many to go is our 89-acre Former Wayne Golf Course. I believe the stretch of the Sammamish River Trail from the Park at Bothell Landing to the Former Wayne Golf Course is most beautiful and inspiring. How fortunate are we to have these amenities in our community? The purchase of these acres was celebrated by our community and now we are moving into the next phase. A few months ago, we held an information session to learn more about Wayne and what is next. If you weren’t able to attend, you can find all the meeting materials at www.bothellwa.gov/Wayne. The City used grants to purchase 85 acres of the property, requiring they be maintained only as “passive use” areas, salmon habitat, or wetland restoration areas. These areas cannot be developed and come with strict conservation requirements. During purchase negotiations, the City paid full market value for four acres in the middle (where the old clubhouse and parking lot are). This allows future City Councils to thoughtfully develop a public amenity there in the future. It must complement the park, and several things are prohibited – no housing, no manufacturing, no offices. It was envisioned to be the economic engine of the park, generating revenue to help the City fund the costs of maintaining and restoring the 85 acres of open space. To learn more about that active space, we recently commissioned a comprehensive financial feasibility study and market analysis, so that we could have some data. What is the market demand? What kind of permissible development could potentially succeed there? We own this land in perpetuity, so what could a public-private partnership and long-term lease look like? This data (and there is a lot of it in the study!) gives us better information and statistics, so that we can make sound and informed decisions with our community. Over the next few months, we will draft a broad Request for Proposals (RFP). The RFP will not dictate a particular project, or type of restaurant or hotel. We are optimistic that interested and qualified developers will present visionary projects that meet our community values, complement the character of the park, and be financially sound. To stay up to date on this project and follow the proposal process, sign up for our city eNews at www.bothellwa.gov/notifyme.