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Public hearing coming for Marshall Field rezone

MONROE — The school district’s proposal to rezone Marshall Field in midtown to allow a future apartment complex is back for further consideration.
A public hearing at the city’s planning commission meeting is scheduled for Monday, Oct. 12. At that meeting, the commission might render a recommendation to advise the City Council whether or not to approve it.
The district doesn’t plan to build it’s own apartments here, but to sell the land. The rezone makes it favorable for buyers.
Up to 310 units could be built here if its rezoned. No formal building is decided.
Marshall Field and Memorial Field are nestled behind neighborhood homes along Columbia Street and along Maple Street. St. Mary of the Valley Catholic Church abuts the land to the west.
Drivers on Kelsey Street might recognize the field as the fenced-off grassy area across from the brick school building at Kelsey and Hill Street.
At the commission’s Aug. 24 meeting, commissioners focused on Monroe’s available rental housing inventory. Some commissioners said they are interested in seeing any building be rented at affordable rates. The district says it won’t dictate the site’s use after it is sold.
The city is not seeing heavy redevelopment in the midtown areas it designated for multi-family housing, city planning director Ben Swanson said at the Aug. 24 meeting. On this, Commissioner Steve Jensen wondered if zoning densities in the area need to be downgraded to reflect that and how that might interplay with rezoning the Marshall Field site.
In January, the City Council remanded the rezone request back to the commission for further discussion.
Neighbors opposed high-density zoning when this came up last year. An online petition to “preserve Marshall Field” a year ago got 750-plus signatories.
Some have lobbied for a swimming pool, like what’s in Snohomish, but the Monroe School District says it can’t dive into building one.
The school district believes the site has no purpose for its needs anymore. It is too small for a future school.
The site was once the high school’s football field. The district locked the fence to keep people off the property, city planner Shana Restall said in August.

Meeting information
Time and date: Monday, Oct. 12 at 7 p.m.
Find a Zoom link at https://monroewa.gov/153/Planning-Commission
Or by phone, the call-in number is: 1-253-215-8782,  Meeting ID: 891 2667 9209





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Original contents copyrighted by Mach Publishing (Snohomish County Tribune), all rights reserved

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