Is Mercerdale’s lawn the answer to MICA’s parking problem? | Letter

While attending the recent “Save Mercerdale Park” event, a Joni Mitchell song could be heard. The words, “They paved paradise and put up a parking lot,” reverberated in my head, and a light went on. Whenever asking a Mercer Island Center for the Arts’ representative about the lack of parking for this facility, the mantra is, “We are going to talk to Farmer’s Insurance about using their lot.” One would think that that would be a starting point, not an ending negotiation.

I say, maybe, just maybe, MICA is doing nothing about the parking until after a building is on that land. Why? Well, maybe the “real plan” is to wait until the first big outcry from the community comes about this parking issue. Then where do you think the land for all of the cars is going to materialize? You got it — another chunk of the park gone.

As Islanders, we have been through this before. There was great opposition when a civic center on this land was conceptualized, and “blistering public disapproval” (Reporter article) when the fire station with its parking was proposed.

Why isn’t our City Council listening to the majority of its constituents instead of a minority? People of this Island have clearly voted that they do not want to loose even a part of this treasured “village green.” Why do we have to go through this again?

Our many parks and open areas are what makes this Island one of the most desirable places to live. Please keep it that way.

Pat Howie

Mercer Island

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