Thanks to a house bill signed by the governor, the City of Covington is able to create a new district which will feature hotels, restaurants and a man-made lake.
Gov. Jay Inslee signed House Bill 1366 on May 7, which allows the creation of a community facility district.
A community facility district is a special taxing district that provides a way for developers to use their property as collateral to support the construction of an even wider range of improvements such as roads, stormwater facilities, park improvements, traffic lights or even libraries and schools.
Covington Mayor Jeff Wagner said the taxing district being created in Covington will be located at the LakePointe Property, which is a 214 acres of property that will be transformed into 850,000 square feet of retail space and more than 1,500 residential units in the process of being built by Oakpointe.
He also said the project is set to include two upper scale hotels, a peninsula, several sit down restaurants and a man made lake, which will be fed through Jenkins Creek.
LakePointe will be located at 18808 SE 256th St. in Covington, which is where Lakeside Industries is located.
Oakpointe is a real estate development and community development company, according to the company’s website.
Wagner said HB 1366 is important for this project because it is going to help build roads that will be needed within the LakePointe property.
To start development on LakePointe the city will begin with the Covington Connector project, which is a $50 million construction project, which will connect Southeast 256th Street at the State Route 18 on and off ramps to State Route 516 along the existing corridor.
“It’ll be another bypass through downtown Covington drawing people into the Lakepointe property,” Wagner said.
Wagner believes there will be a bid for the connecter this fall.
Construction for the project has already started though, Wagner said, and as of right now they are reclaiming dirt in order to build the connector.
“Once the road get developed and built, then they’ll start on commercial,” Wagner said. “So I would say within three years you’ll start seeing hopefully commercial, if not sooner. And then the housing units would follow.”
This project is estimated to take anywhere between five to 10 years.
The next steps for the LakePointe development is to create a five member board that will decide taxing within the district.
Wagner is unsure when the board will be created.
For more information about the LakePointe development, go to covingtonwa.gov/lakepointe/.