In recognition of its geography, population and the Chinese money behind much new development in Bellevue, the city is making an effort to assist both new and established businesses with links to Asia.
Holly Zhang, who got started in the jewelry business in Beijing before moving to Bellevue, credits the city's Office of Economic Development with giving her data and referrals to banks and mentors that enabled her to launch a pearl jewelry business at the Bravern.
Zhang's story is featured in the latest It's Your City, the resident newsletter. Other headlines in the issue include:
More permits available online
The City of Bellevue is expanding its online permitting services, enabling contractors and residents to submit plans for mechanical, plumbing and electrical permits electronically.
If online plan review for these permits proves successful, it could be expanded to many other construction-related permits. Bellevue residents have been able to obtain "simple" permits online at My Building Permit since 2002.
Resident input weighed for East Link agreement
As the city hashes out details it wants to see in the East Link light rail route through Bellevue, residents have had significant input.
Tentatively set to sign an agreement with Sound Transit regarding East Link, the city in September held an open house and a public hearing, and had individual meetings with residents who would be directly affected by the route. Negotiations between Bellevue and Sound Transit cap a multi-year environmental review process and public outreach that’s included dozens of other meetings in Bellevue.
South Bellevue annexation enters second phase
In matter of months, the Tamara Hills neighborhood will become a part of Bellevue. Three other unincorporated areas south of Interstate 90 -- Eastgate, Hilltop and Horizon View -- may soon follow suit.
The City Council accepted notice-of-intent petitions from Eastgate and Tamara Hills in June and from Hilltop and Horizon View in September. In the second phase of the direct-petition annexation process, owners of property representing at least 50 percent of an area's assessed valuation must agree to annex.
On the road to downtown transportation improvements
With light rail, rapid buses and a new State Route 520 bridge to change the way people get around and through downtown Bellevue, the city wants to identify complementary improvements in city transportation facilities.
Transportation projects for downtown were tabbed in the city's Downtown Subarea Plan, but it was adopted in 2004, before East Link or RapidRide buses were envisioned. City planners are now updating the Downtown Transportation Plan to address the changing transportation landscape.
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