Washington Federal forecloses on Fairhaven Highlands

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Chuckanut Ridge is now ready for purchase by the city of Bellingham, courtesy of Washington Federal Savings. Today, the bank foreclosed on Fairhaven Highlands, the owner of the 85 acres of beautiful south Bellingham woodlands, ponds, springs, and streams.

The city has been in negotiations for the land for over a year, unable to reach agreement with all the owners of Fairhaven Highlands. I have it from good sources that David Edelstein prevented the deal from being completed. Pike reappointed Edelstein to a second term to the Board of Trustees of the Bellingham Library as one of his first actions on taking office in 2007.

Washington Federal long ago indicated it preferred to sell the property and had no interest in developing it. When they took over Horizon Bank, Edelstein's former partner in the property, many hoped the city of Bellingham would negotiate to purchase the property. Edelstein and Horizon had planned over 739 living "units" for the sensitive woodland area. Many residents of Bellingham's south side have worked hard for years to stop the development and have the land purchased with voter approved Greenways funds. Indeed, the last Greenways levy even promised as much in its campaign material.

NWCitizen appears to be breaking this story; it is not yet posted on the Bellingham Herald website. Hopefully others will provide more information about this issue.

About John Servais

Citizen Journalist and Editor • Fairhaven, Washington USA • Member since Feb 26, 2008

John started Northwest Citizen in 1995 to inform fellow citizens of serious local political issues that the Bellingham Herald was ignoring. With the help of donors from the beginning, he has [...]

Comments by Readers

Tip Johnson

Mar 09, 2011

Correction:  Citizens worked for decades, doing the work the City should have done to protect them.

At every turn, the City did everything they could to keep this project alive, including many they shouldn’t have.  I can’t even imagine the cost citizens have incurred.

Now, the only property capable of extending Fairhaven Park and parlaying the InterUrban acquisitions into a Gateway to the Chuckanuts is potentially available.  Let’s hope that the City and the Bank have that Stanley Park kind of vision that can make this a reality.


Larry Horowitz

Mar 09, 2011

The City of Bellingham just posted a news release on its website, “Bank action to foreclose on Fairhaven Highlands supports City plans to purchase the property.”



Doug Karlberg

Mar 10, 2011



Hue Beattie

Mar 10, 2011

Greatnews!Looking forward to a big celebration maybe on a sunny summer day this year.


Todd Granger

Mar 11, 2011

Great news,
The perfect new jail sight and lest costly alternative.
750 homesites into 800 beds. The perfect location for quite a few bankers and others, in Pooh’s 100 Acre Woods.
“...There are injuries which nature cannot forgive; she wouls cease to be nature id she did. As well can the lover forgiove the ravisher of his mistress, as the continent forgive the murders of Britian. The Aligmighty hath implanted in us these unextinguishable feelings for good and wise purposes. There are the guardians of his image in our hearts. They distinguish us from the herd of common animals. The social compact would dissolve, and justice be extripated the earth, or have only a casual existance were we callous to the touches of affection. The robber and the murderer, would often escape unpunished, did not the injuries which our temper sustains, provoke us into justice.
O ye that love mankind! Ye that dare oppose, not only the tyranny, but the tyrant, stand forth! Every spot of the old world is run over with oppression. Freedom had been hunted around the globe. Asia, and Africa, have long expelled her. Europe regards her as a stranger, and England hath given her warning to depart. O! recieve the fugative, and prepare in time an asylum for mankind…”


Dudley Evenson

Mar 16, 2011

Chuckanut Ridge, Fairhaven Higlands, The 100 Acre Wood - so many names!
We are thrilled that public acquisition of this land may become a reality at last.  After working for 21 years to save this precious urban forest laced with wetlands and wildlife corridors, the efforts of our wonderful community may be paying off.  There have been so many dedicated citizens over the past two decades who have devoted time, energy, and money to mount this incredible effort.  Who would have known that Horizon Bank would go under?  Who would know that the city would finally be ready to commit to purchasing this land?  Thanks to all who have helped over the years and to forces beyond our control that have intervened to make this possible.  We will continue to hold onto the vision until the purchase by the city is finalized and the land is preserved once and for all for future generations of humans, for wildlife and for the forest itself.