Although it's been open for less than a year, Bellevue's new City Hall has already proved a destination for events large and small. It's time to pin a blue ribbon on the distinctive angular building on 110th Avenue Northeast; the Bellevue Downtown Association has named it Community Treasure of 2006.
Ron Kessack, right of way manager with the Bellevue Transportation Department, was named "Public Official of the Year" at the BDA's 33rd annual celebration Thursday, sponsored by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP. Kessack was cited for helping to manage crowds and keep traffic flowing for large events such as the Bellevue Arts and Crafts Fair.
The BDA issues Place Making Awards each year to honor major accomplishments, significant events and individual contributions in the downtown area from the previous year. More than 400 business and community leaders attended the awards event at Meydenbauer Center.
The BDA said City Hall "has enhanced our downtown with outstanding aesthetics and a function that serves the entire community." The organization also noted that the building, which opened in May of 2006, "is notable for its architectural beauty and efficiency" and "provides excellent access for Bellevue citizens."
Of Kessack, the BDA said, "behind the scenes, this person makes life a little easier for all of us downtown. Every year, he plays a big role in making the BDA’s events – and other events - a success. Kessack was cited for being a smart, dedicated public servant, "always finding solutions to tough problems" related to large events in a busy downtown area.
The Parlor Billiards & Spirits got an award for Gutsy Move of the Year, while Group Health was honored as a "tradition builder" for sponsoring the ice arena at Downtown Park during the holiday season. Peter Horvitz, the former publisher of the recently defunct King County Journal, was honored for his leadership of a newspaper that told Bellevue's story.
Supporting sponsors for the BDA event were Equity Office, GA Creative, Ryan Wenzel Events, DCI Engineers and The Seattle Times. Project sponsors for the evening were The Bellettini, Su Development, Gerding Edlen Development and Wright Runstad.
Established in 1974, the Bellevue Downtown Association is a nonprofit organization that promotes downtown Bellevue as the economic and cultural heart of the Eastside. The BDA advocates for a shared vision of downtown Bellevue, cultivates economic vitality, fosters a dynamic civic and cultural community and creates an open forum for downtown residents and businesses.
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