The Council will ultimately decide the fate of the Sammamish Valley. Tell them you support FoSV's position by clicking the button above and sending them an email. [This this link will open a new browser window with email content that you can edit. It is pre-addressed to the relevant members of the Council.]
Who We Are
Friends of Sammamish Valley (FoSV) is a group of local citizens, businesses, and organizations with the goals of protecting the Sammamish Valley Agricultural Production District (APD), maintaining the character of the surrounding Rural Area, and preserving the rural lifestyle for local residents. Learn more.
why you should care
The Sammamish Valley is currently being threatened by a proposal before the King County Council that would allow for commercial and retail businesses to operate in protected rural and agricultural areas. There are a handful of businesses including remote tasting rooms and event centers that have been illegally operating outside of the urban boundaries. Rather than working with those businesses to relocate into the urban areas, this ordinance would permanently establish them in the protected areas. Wineries and similar businesses are an important part of the region and we want them to flourish, but remote tasting rooms and event centers belong in the urban area where the vast majority are already legally operating. The result of allowing these businesses to operate on rural land will be increased traffic, parking lots on rural land, pedestrian safety issues, water runoff that damages agricultural areas, lighting and noise pollution, and more. This ordinance threatens a rural oasis that is needed more than ever as greater urban density comes to Redmond, Woodinville, Kirkland, and Bothell. Increased commercialization in the Valley would also hurt the vast majority of legally operating businesses that rely on the rural nature of the Valley as an attractive setting for visitors. We need to make sure that the voice of the Sammamish Valley community is heard by the King County Council.
what you can do
The King County Council is currently considering proposed changes to the regulations governing the winery and adult beverage industry and how it operates in the Sammamish Valley. What is currently on the table is a defacto rezoning that will open up large swaths of the Valley to urban use and ultimately lead to a radical transformation of the Valley away from its current rural nature. This is also being done in a way that sidesteps the long-accepted Growth Management Act (GMA) process as a venue for all stakeholders to be heard in debates on urban growth vs rural preservation.
FoSV’s position is that urban uses cannot be allowed to sprawl across the Rural Area and the APD. Retail and commercial buildings, traffic, parking lots, signage and outdoor lighting for wine, beer and liquor tasting rooms, and for event centers, are urban uses that do not belong on APD farmland and in the Rural Area. There is plenty of land for these businesses to operate legally inside of the Urban Growth Areas in the surrounding cities of Woodinville, Redmond, Kirkland and Bothell.
FoSV has set forth detailed changes to King County Beverage Ordinance 2018-0241 in order to eliminate aspects of the ordinance that are most detrimental to farms and rural residents. For the complete story, read the Rationale for Proposed Beverage Ordinance Changes that FoSV has submitted to the King County Council.
endorse fosv & Stay up-to-date
Enter your name and email address in the boxes below, and we'll send you an email only when there is something timely and newsworthy going on relative to zoning and development in the Sammamish Valley. And please consider joining the hundreds of people who have publicly endorsed FoSV’s position on the Beverage Ordinance.
Do you own a business or represent an organization that would like to endorse FoSV’s common sense position on the King County Beverage Ordinance? We would love to add you to the growing list of endorsements.
Make a donation
Please donate to Friends of Sammamish Valley to support our efforts to protect the Valley from urban commercialization on protected rural and agricultural land. 100% of your contribution will fund our outreach to members of the community, local businesses, and elected officials to educate everyone about the negative impacts the proposed beverage ordinance will have on the Sammamish Valley - and to work with the King County Council to find an alternative approach.
other ways to get involved
Spread the word. A concise overview with helpful maps (click here to open the PDF in a separate window) can be shared with friends and neighbors to quickly get them up to speed.
Send us your questions and comments. We're anxious to hear from you. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.