Golly, like a many-headed hydra this project comes back at us — again.
One of the principles I learned when serving on the Olympia Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee was the value of “viewsheds.” Viewsheds confer a “premium” on all the properties in the vicinity. In this case, the viewsheds are from up on the east side of Olympia, the west side, from the Capitol grounds, and from Budd Inlet. Thousands of pieces of property gain value by having broad views.
The proposal to not only remodel the tall building but add more buildings and density will diminish the visual landscape.
As it happens, my husband and I moved to Lacey last year. Olympia remains “our” downtown, the place we take guests, the place we keep our boat, and where we visit the Farmers Market several times a week. It is a regional magnet.
Now to some more specifics:
Traffic — already commented on by many
The “flood barrier” — without an overall plan for downtown Olympia, this barrier will send flood waters onto other properties
“Elite” housing — we don’t need more places for lobbyists to hang their hats, we need more middle class housing
The wall-to-sidewalk rendering in the Olympian shows no softening by green space; the project is immense and overwhelming from any perspective
No to Views on Fifth.