LETTER | Hidden Ways Architecture Affects How We Feel

Hi Rob,

I am sending you a copy of a serious article (copy below) about how various types of urban environments physically affect people, in case you’ve not seen it.  I did sent it to the Kirkland City Council last week, along with my own suggestions to them regarding how to deal with future growth (copy at the bottom). Of course, I don’t know whether they’ll actually see it…


Dear City Council,


I believe that the best urban plan for the future of Kirkland should be the following:  


  1. Create high density areas in a few areas, such as Downtown, Totem Lake and Juanita.


  1. Surround those areas with low density areas and parks that are well connected by attractive trails like the CKC and additional future branches from it.


This would provide the widest possible range of urban different environments available to everyone.  It would also make the city distinctly different from, and more attractive than, others in King County.


We must always keep in mind that once open spaces and low density areas disappear, they are gone forever!  And, transportation options WILL change dramatically.  Looking back in time, consider what King County could have looked like if most of the shores of Puget Sound, Lake Washington, Lake Sammamish and other lakes had been developed like Green Lake. Similarly, consider what Kirkland would look and feel like today if it did not have the few beaches it has, and had allowed high-rise buildings along its shore.


In other words, don’t make plans for just 30-50 years, but for the next generations, i.e. 100 + years.




Shawn Etchevers



“The hidden ways that architecture affects how you feel” by Michael Bond




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