Council approves design agreement, grants for Evergreen Playfield Complex upgrades

During a discussion about Evergreen Playfield #5 improvements, Mayor Pro Tem Bryan Wahl suggested adding “Bring them home” to the Sonics logo at the basketball court adjacent to the Recreation Pavilion.

The Mountlake Terrace City Council during its Tuesday business meeting approved a $323,834 agreement for Robert W. Droll Landscape Architects to design Phase 2 of the Evergreen Playfield Complex, which includes ballfield, tennis courts and building improvements

The complex, located at 22205 56th Ave. W., is an eight-acre site with tennis courts, a multi-purpose synthetic turf field, baseball/softball fields, accessible restrooms, concession stand, parking and a playground. In 2021, the city completed the first phase of improvements there, while converting the Evergreen Playfield #1 from a sand surface to a multipurpose turf sport field. This newest project, Evergreen 3 Ballfield and Tennis Court Upgrades (Phase 2), will use grant funding supplemented with city funding to complete additional upgrades.

These include converting the dirt infield at playfield #3 to turf, resurfacing the tennis courts and landscaping, fencing, lighting, building and parking areas improvements.

The total cost of the playfield #3 project is estimated at $2,815,560. The council on Tuesday voted to approve design work, at a cost of $323,834.32. The remaining $2,491,726 of the project is reserved for construction. The city secured three separate Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office grants for the work, totaling $1.3 million. City funds will cover the remainder.

Noting that the four tennis courts would be resurfaced, Councilmember Erin Murray asked if it would be possible to add pickleball lines to the courts.

City Parks Project Manager Donnelle Dayao replied that the grant for the tennis court must be reviewed to confirm that adding pickleball lines would not violate any conditions.

Councilmember Rory Paine-Donovan asked if crumb rubber would be used for the infield and what the environmental effects could be.

Dayao said the playfield materials and environmental impacts would be discussed during the planning stage.

The council also unanimously approved an agreement with the Washington State Recreation Conservation Office for grants that will fund the replacement of the existing lighting on the Evergreen Playfield #5 baseball field with energy-efficient LED bulbs and a modernized control system.

The $484,632 in funding includes a youth athletic facilities grant for $241,000, matched with $241,000 from the City’s Parks Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) and a $2,632 rebate from the Snohomish County Public Utilities District.

Recreation and Parks Director Jeff Betz said the current light poles are metal halide fixtures installed in 1995, and the bulbs have a three-year lifespan. He explained that the current bulbs cost the city about $5,000 to replace due to the labor and equipment needed to reach the top of the 90-foot pole.

“This project will have a large impact on the quality of the lighting on the field,” Betz said.

The approved lighting adds two new light poles to provide better visibility and includes a 25-year warranty on the LED bulbs, meaning the city only needs to call the contractor for maintenance. A computer application can control the lights remotely rather than physically turn them on at the site. Further, the lights are designed to reduce light pollution.

Bidding for the playfield #5 project will begin in winter 2024, with design and construction planned for summer 2024.

Also on Tuesday, the council also authorized the parks department to apply for a $35,000 – $100,000 grant from the State of Washington’s Recreation Conservation Office (RCO) with no match requirement from the city.

RCO has secured $5 million from the Washington State Legislature for a one-time funding opportunity to assist local parks departments in maintaining their working facilities.

The funds from the grant would replace the existing fencing, basketball backboards, rims, and court surfacing material for the Sonics Basketball Court next to the city’s Recreation Pavilion. Betz said the Sonics logo would be repainted.

In other business, the council received the city’s 2023 second-quarter financial report, which was delivered by Finance Director Janella Lewis.

Operating revenues for the general fund, which pays for city council, community and economic development, parks and property management, were at 52% of the 2023 adopted budget, she said. That amount “is only 2% below the average for the past few years, and from 2019 to 2022, they were at 54% of budget,” Lewis said.

Total general fund operating expenditures for the second quarter were at 56% of the operating budget, the same as in 2022, Lewis said.

The recreation fund covers the revenues and expenditures of the city’s recreation services, including general recreation programs. Lewis said the fund covered 74% of its costs through the second quarter, and recreation fund operating revenues for the quarter totaled 50% of the adopted budget.

“Revenues from aquatics programs were at 33% of the budget, and athletic fitness programs revenues were at 63% of the budget,” Lewis said. “As of the end of the second quarter, youth program revenues are at 68% of the adopted budget.”

The street operations fund maintains 60 miles of city streets, 500 streetlights, 15 signalized intersections, 3,300 signs, 70 miles of sidewalks, numerous crosswalks and pavement markings, and vegetation for more than 19 miles. Expenditures through the second quarter represent 36% of the 2023 budget.

The stormwater utility fund pays to monitor and protect water quality and reduce flooding. Further, it funds business inspection, manages stormwater through four watersheds, oversees seven miles of creek and maintains 52 miles of pipe and 2,000 storm drains.

“Stormwater operating revenues exceeded operating expenses by approximately $838,000 for the second quarter,” Lewis said. “These funds will be used to make future debt service payments and capital fund capital projects.”

The sewer utility fund pays for wastewater management from homes and commercial businesses, which is treated before discharge. The city maintains 66 miles of sewer main lines, 30 miles of laterals, 1,400 access holes, 5,500 sewer connections and four lift stations.

Lewis said the operating revenues exceeded operating expenses by $18,000 and that the funds would be used for capital improvements and debt services.

The water utility fund aims to distribute clean drinking water to residents and businesses. The fund maintains 90 miles of distribution pipes through water reservoirs, 900 hydrant access holes, 2,700 control valves, 6,000 service connections and 2.5-million-gallon water tanks.

“Operating revenues in the water utility fund are at 34% of the adopted 23 budget,” Lewis said.

The enterprise fund pays for water, wastewater and stormwater maintenance. These are funded with revenues from user rates and fees. Like a business enterprise, these funds cover their own costs without help from outside funding. Under Washington law, these revenues cannot be used to subsidize programs other than those related to the utility.

Mayor Kyoko Matsumoto Wright signs the proclamation declaring Sept. 14-Oct. 14, 2023 Hispanic Heritage Month in Mountlake Terrace.

In other business, Mountlake Terrace Mayor Kyoko Matsumoto Wright signed a proclamation designating Sept. 15 – Oct. 15, 2023, as National Hispanic Heritage Month, recognizing the contributions of Hispanic Americans in the Mountlake Terrace community, Washington State, and the country.

The observation started as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson in 1968. President Ronald Reagan expanded it to 30 days in 1988, beginning on Sept. 15 and ending on Oct. 15. National Hispanic Heritage Month has since become a national tradition.

Recipients of the proclamation could not attend, so it will be presented to the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Commission at its next meeting on Sept. 20.

There were no comments from the public during Tuesday’s meeting.

The city council’s regular meetings are the first and third Mondays of each month at 7 p.m. Their work sessions are the preceding Thursday at 7 p.m. The Planning Commission meets on the second and fourth Mondays of each month at 7 p.m.

The council is scheduled to meet next in a work/study session at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, at Mountlake Terrace City Hall, 23204 58th Ave. W.

According to the agenda for the next meeting, the council is set to review the 236th Street Vacation Resolution and the 4713 240th St. S.W. Annexation Ordinance. Also scheduled are reviews of the Energy Savings Performance Contract with McKinstry and an ordinance for the City Council Protocol Manual.

The meeting will also be available via Zoom: Go to and enter meeting ID 844 1833 2151 and passcode 98043.

To listen via telephone, call 1-253-215-8782 and enter the meeting ID and passcode 98043.

You also can view live-streamed meetings and past video recordings on YouTube at

— By Rick Sinnett

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