Tacoma Urbanist

Jul. 7, 2011 at 12:49am

Tacoma City Council Candidate David Boe Answers Tough Urban Questions From the Tacoma Sun

From the Tacoma Sun:




Below are the questions and responses sent to David Boe, candidate for Tacoma City Council District #7. This at-large district is current represented by councilmember Boe who is running to be retained in the district.

The questions being asked to Tacoma City Council candidates this year from the Tacoma Sun are very specific and address such issues as the best method to restore the Winthrop Hotel, removing harmful Parking Requirements in downtown Tacoma, rebuilding Tacoma Streetcars, and addressing the Felon Dumping Ground Issue.

Tacoma Sun Candidate Questionnaire

Candidate:  David Boe
Position:  Tacoma City Council  At-Large No. 7

Q XI: What is your position in relation to the settlement proposal that the Tacoma City Council is considering regarding digital billboards?  Do you support it? If you were elected to the Tacoma City Council, would you authorize the City of Tacoma to expend financial resources to defend the Tacomas current 1997 billboard law?

Answer:  Well I did vote to proceed with the settlement precisely because it was going to require the Planning Commission to review the signage code and look into all the details of digital billboards.  Having served on the Planning Commission, and knowing the great individuals currently serving on the commission, I had complete trust in their abilities to delve into the details of the issue (something sadly we on Council are not afforded the luxury of time to allow us to typically get into the weeds).  I have been most impressed by the time and effort by the community in getting to the public hearings and submitting public comment and I have tried to make each of the Planning Commission public hearings to hear the testimony personally.

I have stated repeatedly that first we need to get our signage code right before we proceed to look at options for settlement or potential litigation action.  Our sign code needs to include design guidelines on the signage structure themselves in order to graphically illustrate non-conforming signs.  We also need to incorporate unequivocally clear language about the removal of non-conforming signs and have delineated a clear process for the removal of blighted signs (such as we have Code Enforcement for derelict buildings).  And for me, all non-conforming signs must come down before any new code compliant billboards are erected.

As for digital itself, I am not a fan of internally illuminated signs at all because they produce glare (i.e. you are seeing the light coming at you instead of reflected light off the surface of the sign).  If only indirect lighting is incorporated as a standard, I do not see how internally lit digital signs could be in compliance.


Let's see how candidates do this year.

comments [9]  |  posted under tacoma


by Erik on 7/7/2011 @ 2:08am


by fredo on 7/7/2011 @ 7:11am
Questions aren't that tough.

by tacoma1 on 7/7/2011 @ 8:44am
I read the questions and answers also. I agree with fredo. Nothing but softballs.

I'd like someone on the council to "champion" one of these projects that are mentioned in the interview. To actually own the problem and solution. I almost don't care which issue at this point. Whether its the Winthrop, our polluted air quality, our diminished transit funding, our street car going nowhere........... Just pick a problem, determine a solution, and make it friggin happen.

by Erik on 7/7/2011 @ 4:12pm
@Fredo and tacoma1: I am glad that you think the questions were easy.

5 years ago, few councilmembers had any notion what the off-street parking requirements were in Tacoma let alone their detrimental effect on urban design. They certainly have come up the knowledge curve on urban design.

Yet, most of downtown Tacoma (aside from the International Financial Services Area) still has 1960 era parking requirements which has caused downtown be look like it has been carpet bombed with empty lots.

We made some significant progress on the mixed use center revisions on parking requirements a couple years ago and the downtown still has not been revised. Yet, there is an effort this year to do so.

As for the Winthrop Hotel, it still sits blighted and dilapidated waiting restoration. Still a challenge I think to restore but doable.

by NineInchNachos on 7/7/2011 @ 4:48pm
yeah, try asking these questions to the flesh toned sack shaped like a Spiro Manthou

by NineInchNachos on 7/7/2011 @ 4:49pm
Any questions from feed tacoma power users for Lauren Walker's opposition candidate?

by KevinFreitas on 7/7/2011 @ 4:57pm
Who dat? (the opposition candidate, I mean)

by tacoma1 on 7/7/2011 @ 5:07pm
How 'bout asking sitting candidates:
1) what do they think that they accomplished while in office?
2) what do they expect to accomplish if reelected?
3) what was their biggest f'up so far, and what will they do differently next time?

I don't expect perfect candidates, but I would like to know what added value they might be if elected.

by Erik on 7/7/2011 @ 6:03pm
Don't forget the David Boe interview at Frost Park conducted by Adam the Alien: