Bainbridge council approves zoning change for marina property

With a 4-2 vote, the Bainbridge Island City Council approved a zoning change to the Bainbridge Island Marina property.

The vote changed the zoning from “open space residential” to “water dependent-industrial”

The property, which operates as a boatyard and boathouse alongside the Bainbridge Island Yacht Club, sits near Pritchard Park and the Japanese American Exclusion Memorial. With a zone change, the marina will be able to expand its facilities to include a parking area and an additional building.

However, a possible expansion and the zone change has brought forth criticism from residents in the area as well as memorial advocates.

At Monday’s meeting, the council heard from both sides. Those who spoke on the memorial said the sacred and meditative aspect of the site should be preserved.

Council members Kirsten Hytopolous and Debbi Lester opposed the motion to approve the change.

“I think if we do have a duality of public goods, we have an environmental issue on one hand and the memorial on the other … I don’t support spot rezones,” Hytopolous said. “Things happen and where we are at this place and time, I can’t imagine supporting these impacts.”

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