Lots of public comment on the Downtown Bellevue Upzone Plan, with about 20-30 people speaking, and most comments came from professionals at MZA Architects, Fana Group, Kemper, Vulcan, Weber Thompson, plus property owners who want to redevelop, investors, other architects, builders, etc.
Least to say, there was no organized opposition to the upzoning, no heated debates and no controversy like that seen in the meetings for the U District upzone and Los Angeles's Prop. S. Those who spoke out against the upzone were the exception rather than the norm.
Thus, most of the concerns in the public comment were tower spacing, tower setback and FAR requirements and how the three impede the feasibility of highrise towers and development. The same people (professionals) who spoke gave detailed suggestions and proposed changes to these three items to make high rise construction and development more feasible.
Also from the public comment...
- Developers are waiting for the upzone to be adopted before springing into action... thus explaining the lull in new construction of highrise towers.
- Request for more density near future Link Light Rail Stations and reconsideration of the amounts of parking allowed at developments in station areas.
- Several comments with wishes for more height.. like going 300' (91 m) in the 264' (81 m) zone.
The planning commission set a goal to wrap up their review of this plan by the end of April, implying that the upzone will be forward to City Council sometime around May... looking like a late-Spring vote for adoption (likely) or rejection (not likely).