Proposed New Lake Stevens Library

Lake Stevens Library bond misses 60-percent mark

This conceptual drawing shows how a new Lake Stevens Library, owned and operated by Sno-Isle Libraries, might be situated with city services and city police on property near 99th Avenue NE and Market Place in the Chapel Hill area.


Getting to this point

  • Feb. 13, 2018
    While a slim majority of voters approve of the library bond levy measure, the count falls short of the required 60 percent approval to pass.
  • January, 2018
    Library district and county officials prepare information for the Feb. 13 ballot.
  • Dec. 4, 2017 
    The Snohomish County Council approves Motion 17-385 putting a bond measure on the Feb. 13, 2018, ballot.
  • Oct. 25, 2017
    The Lake Stevens Library Capital Facility Area (LCFA) governing body received the library-district and city resolutions and unanimously approves sending the requests on to the Snohomish County Council.
  • Oct. 24, 2017
    The Lake Stevens City Council unanimously approves Resolution 2017-17, a companion resolution to the one approved by the library-district trustees on Oct. 23.
  • Oct. 23, 2017
    Library-district trustees unanimously approve Resolution 17-03 requesting that a bond measure be placed on the Feb. 13, 2018 ballot.

Election update

It looks like the Lake Stevens community won’t be getting a new library.

“In 2017 and again this year, most voters said the community needs a new library, but the library bond measure didn’t meet the required threshold for passing,” said Jonalyn Woolf-Ivory, Sno-Isle Libraries Executive Director.

Election results show 50.81 percent of voters approving a bond measure to build a new library. The measure needs at least 60 percent approval and a minimum voter turnout of 3,112 ballots cast. As of Feb. 14, 7,013 ballots had been counted. Election results are scheduled to be certified Feb. 23.

“Although disappointed with the results of this election, we want to thank the community for its continued use of their library,” Woolf-Ivory said. “We are committed to continue providing library services to the Lake Stevens community.” More 


The library

For two decades, residents of fast-growing Lake Stevens have said that their library is too small and cramped to meet community needs. For that reason, and because the city has other plans for the current library site, Sno-Isle Libraries is proposing to build a much larger library near the corner of 99th Avenue NE and Market Place

The new library would feature improvements customers have requested, including more books, study rooms, program space, more computers, comfortable seating, easy access and ample parking. Total space would be 20,000 square feet, which is eight times larger than the current Lake Stevens Library and about the size of Monroe Library.

The election

The proposal to build the library will be on the ballot as Lake Stevens Library Capital Facility Area Proposition No. 1. Ballots will be mailed to voters on Jan. 25 and must be returned by mail or put in ballot boxes no later than Feb. 13.

To pass, the measure needs approval by 60 percent of the voters. For the election to validate, the total number of votes cast must equal at least 40 percent of the votes cast in the 2017 general election.

In the February 2017 election, the same proposal received 66 percent approval, but did not receive enough total votes to pass. Learn more about the election history and related issues.

The costs

The proposed bond measure on the Feb. 13, 2018 ballot is for up to $17 million. Project costs include land, engineering, construction, furnishings, equipment and materials (books, DVDs, etc.).

If approved by voters, the projected cost to property owners within the Lake Stevens Library Capital Facilities Area (with boundaries the same as the Lake Stevens School District) would be 21.1 cents for each $1,000 of assessed value. That means the owner of a $350,000 home would pay about $73.85 a year over the 20-year life of a bond.  

The future

If voters approve the Lake Stevens Library bond measure, Sno-Isle Libraries will gather public input regarding the design of the new library during the spring and summer of 2018.

Pre-construction work and permitting would take place next fall and winter. Construction would start in spring of 2019, and the new library would open in late summer or fall of 2020.

Sno-Isle Libraries is committed to providing services to the Lake Stevens community. If voters reject the proposition, there will be community discussions about potential next steps.

More questions?