Auburn says no to solid waste transfer station

City leaders last week put their collective foot down — official Auburn wants nothing to do with a solid waste transfer station at either of two possible sites King County is considering inside city limits.

City council members at last week's City Council meeting adopted a resolution stating their unanimous opposition to locating a transfer station either west of Lowe's or east of the Supermall as a replacement for King County's aging, outmoded, 50-year-old transfer station in Algona.

"This is a resolution from our city council that we don't believe either of the locations within the city of Auburn are appropriate sites for the transfer station, and as such we will be arguing against their placement here," said Deputy Mayor Nancy Backus.

City leaders acted on the heels of the county's recent announcement that it had pared its new transfer station list to four alternative sites in the south King County area. In addition to the Auburn sites, the county is studying a parcel just outside of Federal Way and another in Algona.

King County put together a committee more than two years ago to examine and grade its existing transfer stations. Committee members examined the stations and stamped many of them "deficient." The Algona station was critiqued for lacking space for vehicles to line up, extended wait times, inability to compact waste, absence of recycling services and other "service deficiencies." King County's Solid Waste Transfer and Waste Management Plan calls for its replacement.

Here are the Auburn sites in detail:

• 1380 C Street Northwest east of the Supermall: southwest of the Longhorn Barbecue and Best Western Hotel, northwest of Auburn School District's Transportation Services, south of the City's Maintenance and Operation yard and north of the GSA Park and ballfields.

• 901 C Street Southwest: west of Lowe's and northwest of Fred Meyer and south of the Auburn Day Care center and the Shag apartments.

"The bottom line was that the sites chosen in Auburn were both in commercial areas, one directly faced the Supermall and was next to the GSA ballfield, the other was right next to Lowe's, a senior apartment building and a residential neighborhood, which was not appropriate for that facility," Auburn Mayor Pete Lewis said after the meeting.

Council members have consistently cited another reason for their opposition — the high commercial value of both properties, which would be taken off the tax rolls.

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