City, Merchants Talk Directional Signage Ahead of Centennial

The Planning Commission and Design Review Board meet Thursday, June 28 for a presentation on a wayfinding gateway monument sign directing traffic into downtown Enumclaw from State Route 410, and public comment is welcome.


Enumclaw turns 100 next year, and one thing the city is aiming toward is ensuring its important landmarks, area attractions and downtown corridor are properly marked with an assortment of wayfinding signs -- the pièce de résistance being a large gateway monument sign visible from State Route 410 when entering the city.

City Planner Clark Close walked the City Council Monday night through the evolution of the numerous wooden wayfinding signs that currently mark destinations including the , downtown, and .

The signs have evolved over the last few years, he said. The latest versions now also point visitors to the and will begin to incorporate design changes including the addition of a city logo as well as painting of the sign poles to black to convey their permanence in the cityscape.

Three downtown merchants, Marilyn Nelson of , John Locatelli of (and ) and Vickie Watkins of addressed the council following Close's presentation and advocated three additional signs be placed in strategic locations that would better illustrate for passers-by why they want to turn into the downtown corridor and see what Enumclaw businesses have to offer.

The city's signs are good, they said, but according to Locatelli, "too utilitarian." They don't do enough to convince drivers it's worth turning off the main highway to visit and hopefully shop and/or dine in Enumclaw. For Nelson, the three signs they propose would also help to highlight the historic district, a walking tour and the Chamber-run .

Locatelli added the city should emphasize "free parking" to make it easy for visitors to get out of their cars and shop, and the cost of such signs should be minimal.

(See the attached photo for a draft of their proposed sign.)

The locations proposed for these signs are:

  • Visible from northbound State Route 410 at the left turnoff to Cole Street
  • Visible from westbound Roosevelt Avenue near the right turnoff to Griffin Avenue
  • On the corner of Porter Street and Griffin Avenue, visible from both the State Route 169 and State Route 164 approaches into the city

Community Development Director Erika Shook said she would need to meet with the group to fine-tune locations as their proposed locations are on public land that may conflict with another agency.

Meanwhile, the city's Planning Commission and Design Review Board will be meeting this Thursday, June 28 at 7 p.m. in City Hall to hear a presentation on the gateway monument sign that is proposed for northbound State Route 410 as drivers enter Enumclaw.

The meeting is open to the public.

Visit the city website or click the PDFs attached to this story to view a presentation about the gateway monument sign, options and material examples.

In Other News:

Three Ordinances Passed: Council passed three ordinances pertaining to the Shoreline Master Program, the second set of 2012 budget amendments which includes funds for a new water utility worker, and an amendment to city code that raises the threshold for the cost of building work from $25,000 to $50,000 before the abutting street needs to be dedicated and improved to city standards.

Surplus Library Assets: Council is mulling what to do with the city library's inventory tracking system (RFID) now that it is not longer in use by King County Library System. A resolution was put forth for Monday to declare the system surplus and then donate it to the Fort Vancouver Regional Library District as they use the RFID system. However, Councilman Sean Krebs recommended holding off on action until the city can investigate if the system may still be marketable before it is donated. Another option would be to enter it into the state surplus auction website.

Chamber of Commerce: Director Kelvin Schipper gave Council an update while Krebs secured $5,000 from the city to support the Chamber in managing the Visitor Center through the rest of the year. (Read this Patch story.)

Transportation: Council passed a resolution pertaining to its state-mandated comprehensive transportation program that needs to be prepared, revised and extended on an annual basis. Its adoption is needed for the city to compete for federal and state transportation funding programs. It basically lists projects that the city has prioritized as needs but the list can be changed. There is a July 1 deadline for the program approval which is why Council has passed the resolution ahead of any public hearing on the matter. A hearing is scheduled at the next Council meeting of July 11, and any proposals and changes brought up at the hearing can be incorporated into the plan before it is adopted.

Business: City Administrator Mike Thomas reports the third meeting of the city's Economic Task Force is set for July 31.

Sen. Roach: State Sen. Pam Roach updated Council on her work in the past year both inside and outside the Legislature. Of local interest, in particular, is her work to secure $3 million in funding for the Rainier School in Buckley () during this last session. Members of Local 491 Rainier School were also in attendance to thank Roach and local municipalities including Enumclaw, Buckley, Carbonado, Wilkeson and Bonney Lake for continued support.

LINCCK: Trip Hart invited City Council members to be a part of National Night Out on August 7, an effort to help neighbors get better connected for the overall well-being of the community. See www.enumclawrhf.org for more information.


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