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Short plat delay has little effect on Olhava

POULSBO — As the final short platting of the Olhava development continues to move at a snail’s pace, potential clients remain interested in joining retail giants The Home Depot and Wal-Mart in 2006.

Wal-Mart is expected to open before the end of the year, while The Home Depot has set Jan. 26, 2006 as its scheduled opening date.

Both retailers are well into the build-up phase of their projects and Wal-Mart recently received permission from the city council to work extended hours to complete the flooring of its building next month.

In May, Andy Barber, president of Barber Development in Kirkland, had a list of potential clients including Asiana Bistro, Payless Shoes, Pink Coconut Tanning Salon and T-Mobile ready to join the Olhava fold once the short platting was approved.

“I believe the short platting will be done in two weeks,” Barber said Wednesday. “Or least that’s my understanding from talking with city officials and the property owner at Olhava.”

The permits for the 32,000-square-foot shopping center are on hold, pending the final approval of the short platting, he said.

“They’re waiting at the front desk for us to pick them once the short platting is approved,” Barber explained.

Even though he would have preferred an earlier start date, Barber said he is still ready to go as soon as he gets the final OK.

“We’re about 75 percent preleased and I think we’ll take our time with the last couple of spaces to make sure we get the right people,” he said.

Once the project gets the final go-ahead, construction is expected to be completed by December, he explained.

“I think we’ll turn over our spaces to our tenants in December and from there, it should take 60 to 90 days,” he said. “We should be ready by March or April.”

While the delay in the short platting process hasn’t affected Barber, City of Poulsbo Associate Planner Linda Mueller said it has caused a couple of developers to change their initial plans.

“We’ve had two people who decided to forego the process and not divide their lots into smaller parcels,” Mueller said, explaining that by keeping their parcels larger than the five-acre short platting requirement, those developers are now able to move ahead with their projects.

Continued development in the area is also tied to the installation of a sewer main along State Route 305 that will provide the additional capacity required for the increased strain being placed on the city’s sewer system.

That project was originally expected to begin in July, but was delayed because of design modifications, explained City Engineer Andrezj Kasiniak.

The final designs have arrived and work should begin in the fall, he said.

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