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SEATTLE-Taller buildings could be built in the Denny Triangle neighborhood as a result of a land preservation deal near Carnation.

King County has set aside the 443-acre Ames Lake Forest through the county’s transfer of development rights program. King County acquired all the development rights on the property and a permanent conservation easement with $2.8 million in dedicated funding.

The development rights are being held in the TDR Bank for resale to landowners inside Seattle’s Denny Triangle neighborhood or the urban area. Under the terms of the transaction, the land will remain in forestry forever and be operated by the landowner Port Blakely.

The King County TDR Program, started in October 1998, has permanently preserved more than 1,200 acres throughout the county with an additional 1,000 acres qualified in the Program. City officials say the program’s goal is to allow the public to gain permanent protection for ecologically sensitive lands at no cost to the taxpayer, while preserving economic gains for the landowner through development in urban areas.

Mark Sollitto, TDR program manager, says the value of land is based on market demand and residential conditions in the area. In the case of the Denny neighborhood agreement, Sollitto anticipates the development rights allowing for higher structures would be worth about $25,000 to $30,000 apiece.

“There has not been a transaction yet, but we expect one in the next 12 to 18 months,” Sollitto says.

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