LETTER | Courts Again Say No to Potala


In the first set of Court Cases, Mr Dargey and Potala attempted to claim that although they had never filed a building permit they had vested by merely filing a permit that evaluates area within the Shoreline Jurisdiction.  This permit only evaluates specific shoreline issues, it does not evaluate an entire project.  After Superior Court, Court of Appeals and a request to Supreme Court, these cases determined that  Mr Dargey and Potala were not vested and could not build the proposed Potala Village.  

The second case was decided on May 26, 2015 by the Superior Court.  Again, Mr Dargey and Potala were told no for the Potala Project.  Potala claims it should have been able to pick up a building permit the day after the Court of Appeals had ruled.  This is in spite of the fact that zoning had changed and the prepared building permit application did not comply with the rules in place at the time.  Also, it appears that Potala had not paid the fees and had not provided the required agreement for the Building Permit (Lot Consolidation Agreement to allow building across property lines without the required setbacks). Clearly, IMHO, the building permit requirements had not been fulfilled by Dargey.

And yet, Dargey again files with the courts as of June 17, 2015.  This all seems like a waste of money and a delay to investors, in my opinion. 

For the neighbors, it would be nice if the investors would clean up the contamination that remains migrating from the property and did something other than park unused machinery on the vacant lot.  We did have neighborhood businesses at this location.  We would walk to the site to pick up our laundry or grab some food.  We would run into neighbors and catch up on their news  Dargey & Potala took down the businesses and provided us (and visitors to Kirkland) an ugly fenced in eye-sore.   

Nothing that the developer has proposed to date meets with the zoning or answers the EIS complaint of incompatibility with the neighborhood – size, scale, lot coverage, etc.  Are these court cases merely to cause some intentional delay?  I’m totally stumped as to why the developer does not get moving on a compatible project that could be profitable for him and his investors.  The financing cost of the unused property must be a real drain on the financial resources of Potala.  And I think there are multiple fatal flaws with Potala that would always keep an incompatible project from being built, regardless of current court filing and result. 

Karen Levenson