As the legal saga approaches finality surrounding the Three Fingers property in Chelan, the owners of the property, Goodfellow Bros, Inc. (GBI) are making preliminary plans for the property public. From public parks to high-rise condos, the company’s silence on the situation while under litigation has led to speculation and discussion of residents of the Lake Chelan Valley into what may “fill” the Three Fingers Fill.
“Due to litigation, it’s best to not talk about things for a while, but now that that is winding down, it is really important in my mind that we show the community that we have been in the community forever and we love Lake Chelan,” explained Chris Martin, Project Manager for Pacific Rim Land (a subsidiary of GBI) and Goodfellow family member. “We want to do something that is good for everybody.”
At the August 22, 2017, Chelan City Council Meeting which included a public hearing on updates to the city’s Comprehensive Plan, Martin spoke to the community and council to explain plans for the fingers.
Martin brought along project renderings and asked the community to add their suggestions to the renderings to aid the company in planning a development in the growing community of Lake Chelan.
“We decided to hire the same company who did Don Morse Park, and we wanted him to do the landscape architecture of the project,” Martin stated. “The city seems to respect him and what he’s done.”
The renderings depict multi and single-family housing with a community clubhouse, pool and spa. The preliminary plan also proposes many public areas such as two public beaches, public water access, a lakeside trail with green space and a public comfort station.
“There’s the boulevard area which is required for public access. We can choose to leave it unlandscaped, but in an effort to be good community members we want to make that a really nice area with beach access and have that meandering lakeside trail for the public,” Martin explained.
Martin added that the plan also allows for two businesses to operate on the property, and a lakeside commercial building is planned which Martin hopes a restaurant will fill.
“I used to love to get in the boat and go down to get burgers, and my mom used to go to Katzenjammers which was a really fun bar,” Martin recounted.
Additionally, dock space for the seaplane would be included allowing the beloved service to return to Lake Chelan.
“From my grandfather down, we have been subsidizing the seaplane forever,” Martin stated. “We had a great relationship with Nick Nolan who operated the plane before, and we continued that. We thought that would be a great community benefit to bring the seaplane back and give them a place to be.”
While the company has kept quiet regarding plans due to the litigation surrounding the property, Martin explains that GBI has been working closely with the city of Chelan and the planning department to ensure the property plans suit the community of Chelan.
“Steve Goodfellow spoke with the Mayor (Mike Cooney) and asked what the city needed. I spoke with Craig Gildroy early on in the project and wanted to give him some ownership and say in the project,” Martin said. “The second side of the process is to get the community’s comments.”
“He came in prior to the public hearing and showed me the plans,” Chelan Planning Director Craig Gildroy said. “I told him the community is looking for more public access.”
Gildroy continued, “Overall, it looks to be in line with our Shoreline Master Program (SMP), but there is more work to be done and more community input is needed. I think they are on the right track asking for the community’s input.”
Some community members have feared that development on the fingers would inhibit lake views for nearby residents, but Martin said that whether GBI or another developer builds the projected residences, Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&Rs) would restrict building height.
“We don’t want to build big, tall condos or max out the lot or the height,” Martin said. “At Lake Chelan, it’s a different lifestyle. In the summer, you want to have space for outdoor barbecues and get-togethers. We do subdivisions, and the way we control how they get built is through CC&Rs.”
Martin expressed hope that the community will see his family’s and the company’s love for Lake Chelan in the plans.
“We are all about transparency in everything that we do. Everything we do is for the public,” Martin stated. “The guiding principles of our company are to benefit the communities where we work. It is important that the community has their say and has their input and that we listen to that.”
The community may make comments or give input to Pacific Rim Land at Chelanfingers@pacificrimland.
(By Jillian Foster)