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Times Profiles Monk-Turned-Developer Planning Kirkland Apartment Project

Lobsang Dargey was born to a family of Tibetan goatherders and now lives as a successful developer in Bellevue. But his plan for a 143-unit apartment complex on Lake Street is facing fierce oppostion from neighbors.

 

The Seattle Times on Monday published a lengthy profile of Lobsang Dargey, a former Tibetan monk who started a flourishing development company based in Everett that is proposing the controversial on Lake Street in Kirkland.

It traces his interesting life path from being born in a family of humble goat-herders in Tibet to his life as a Buddhist monk and now as a developer who lives in Bellevue and has built successful projects in Everett and elsewhere.

The story briefly mentions the opposition Dargey is facing in Kirkland on his Potala Village project, which was the subject of a by the City of Kirkland.

The 143-unit apartment complex with office space on 1.2 acres along scenic Lake Street has been met by fierce opposition from a group of neighbors. They object to the the number of units planned and the project’s impact on traffic, property values and the aesthetics of the scenic lakefront neighborhood, which is marked by some of Kirkland’s signature shoreline parks, , and.

The draft EIS found that the project would unavoidably worsen traffic along busy Lake Street/Lake Washington Boulevard, but not beyond the city's threshold levels. It also found that the apartment building would change the character of the neighborhood, but that with mitigating changes it would not have unavoidable significant impacts.

The Times story briefly mentions the Kirkland project, and quotes Dargey as saying he could handle a setback. "If a project goes south I'm not going to kill myself, I'm not going to jump from the roof," he says. "I tried the best that I can, so I'm not going to do it."

For the full Times profile, click here. For all of Kirkland Patch's ongoing coverage of the Potala Village proposal, click here.

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