Olympia Site Plan Committee reviews Bayan Trails housing project on Sleater Kinney Road NE


Bayan Trails Timberlane project was back on Olympia Site Plan Committee table for review on Wednesday, January 18. The proposal was previously to develop 243 multifamily units on a more than 13-acre site at 709 Sleater Kinney Road NE.

Ron Thomas of Thomas Architecture Studios said the project has been around for eight years and has been on the review committee several times.

The new project proposal comprises 168 apartments distributed equally between four three-story walk-up style apartment buildings; 75 townhouse style – distributed among 10 apartment buildings; one community building with an outdoor pool; and one maintenance/refuse compactor building.

He said the four large buildings were proposed to be independent senior housing, but it is now market rate.

Project overview

According to Thomas, buildings A, B, C and D plans are still three-story multifamily flats. The positioning of the buildings remains the same, as well as the townhomes.

He said the applicant wants more parking, which they put in the north area with one access point to 6th Avenue. They added parallel parking spaces on B street and some diagonal parking areas on C street.

"We intend to submit a deviation request along with the land use application. If there are any adjustments necessary, we will do that. The intent here is to follow a pattern that the city has done on their streets," Thomas said.

Thomas noted that they incorporated low-impact development principles in the project. "How we address stormwater is very closely aligned to the current stormwater regulations."

He added that they intend to request a stormwater scoping meeting to find other requirements. "We do not believe aligning with current stormwater regulation would have any detrimental impact on the arrangement of buildings on site."

He said their landscaping is similar to the original proposal, but they incorporated biofiltration swales.

He said they plan to simplify the pattern of sidewalks between A, B, C and D.

Thomas mentioned their proposal for solid waste to have a separate building compactor. "We intend to have property management bring the trash from the individual buildings to that compactor area, but we want to dive in with solid waste [scoping meeting] to know how many compactors and what solid waste looks like in each of the buildings."

The developer told the committee members they are preserving many trees between building B and C, along Sleater Kinney Road, and on the southeast side of the site.

Planning and engineering review

Although the land use approval issued by the hearing examiner has expired, Olympia associate planner Paula Smith said the development agreement is still in place.

"It addresses the conditions of approval that the examiner had in place. It will help steer your team regarding modifying your plans or providing information," she said, adding that the development agreements are in effect for ten years and can be extended for another five years.

Smith discussed a portion of the development agreement regarding the non-substantive modifications, which she said the changes shall not:

  • Increase the total number of buildings or increase the total number of buildings dedicated to a specific use.
  • Reduce the density below the minimum standard.
  • Include any changes that would increase the traffic impacts.
  • Remove any environmental mitigation measures or encroach into any of the wetland buffers.
  • Fundamentally alter the layout of the site plan or alter the approved design character of the project.

"Any such changes would then require an amendment to the agreement," Smith announced.

She said the proposed changes are the use from independent senior housing to market rate, noting that the staff would be looking at how the change would impact traffic. 

Based on the new parking code, Smith said the project has 20% over what the code allows. "That would require a parking modification request that should come with the land use application."

Zulaika Kim, the city's engineering plan examiner, requires the developer to have an updated traffic impact analysis (TIA).

She said the impact analysis would determine the intersection needs for the Sleater Kinney left-hand turn lane, and it could determine if there is a need for a compact roundabout.

For frontage improvement, Kim said 6th Avenue would be extended as a neighborhood connector.

Kim said the southernmost access could remain private for C street, and the developer can pursue deviation for the angled parking. "We would initially support it to remain private, but it may need some access easement to keep that open at all times."


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  • psterry

    Might want to think about connecting to Ensign Rd. (which is also overloaded at Lilly Rd). The CW trail is a consideration, but there are other locations on the trail where a road intersects the trail. This project puts a lot of traffic on Sleater Kinney, which is a major collector for Johnson Pt . Rd, Hawks Prairie Road, South Bay Rd., Schinke, Libby and others. Sleater-Kinney is still a small street. Fifteenth and Sleater Kinney is already a problem. I see a lot of work for the traffic portion of this project.

    Monday, January 23 Report this