PORT ANGELES: Two property owners threaten to sue city

PORT ANGELES — Two waterfront property owners are threatening to sue the city, which they claim is illegally blocking access to their land a short distance east of City Pier.

A lawyer for Jack Glaubert and Gerald Austin wrote Port Angeles City Attorney Craig Knutson last week to demand the city open a right-of-way along the trail.

Richard Pierson said his clients will also seek unspecified damages for loss of vehicle access over the last 14 years.

It's the latest stage in a long-simmering debate.

Glaubert and Austin want to develop the property as an office and retail complex or a residential project. But their efforts have been stymied by a lack of street access.

They argue the city illegally blocked their access when it built the Waterfront Trail along the route of the former Milwaukee Railroad. Their attorney, Richard Pierson, wrote that because the two own property adjacent to the trail, the right-of-way should revert to them.

The city hasn't decided on its response. But the city has previously said the property owners couldn't use the Waterfront Trail or build a road adjacent to it for access, Knutson said.

For the complete story see Wednesday's Peninsula News, on sale in Clallam and Jefferson counties.

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