If you're a first-time candidate, why are you running?
I am running for Redmond City council because I am a long-time resident of Redmond since 1988 and I want to give back to the city at this important time. The city is going through tremendous changes and needs a true leadership in the city council to tackle and overcome obstacles and working with people. There is no transparency and accountability with the current city council. As a Holistic Physician I am trained to look into root cause issues for treatment approach and I will use the same approach when I am in the council. I have raised 2 startups successfully off the ground and have over 30 years of experience in business, finance, and operation of small business. I will bring all this and my interpersonal skills to work through issues at this important time.
How do you think light rail will change Redmond? Do you think the city needs to get denser, even outside downtown and the Marymoor area?
The Puget Sound region will continue to see dramatic population growth and Redmond is not excluded. So, we need to look into the future and at certain point, rail may be the only effective means of transporting so many people through the region’s narrow corridors. And as expensive as rail is, going forward it will still be cheaper than adding new roads. However, at this point light rail is not going to reduce our current traffic congestion in the city. In fact, it would add to it with the current plan for the stops and the city urban planning. There is no question that Redmond will become denser in the future with or without rail. But with the light rail we have an opportunity now to provide incentives and utilize the ground transportation in conjunction with the light rail. This will reduce the car traffic significantly. We need to work with the big size companies such as Microsoft to implement some of those incentives.
If you could enact one new law or policy change, what would it be?
I will put together measures for reducing traffic in Redmond by implementing the smart technologies that the city of Bellevue has successfully implemented for their traffic. As part of technology policy change, I will introduce measures into our city IT infrastructure to totally revamp our existing outdated IT infrastructure. I will make the IT system accessible and secure for permit applications, permit related info, payments, and other information system needs.
What do you envision for the Marymoor Village area?
I like the idea vision of Marymoor Village as an urban, mixed-use “village. However, we have a good opportunity now to put all the different elements of efficient urban planning into it to make it a success. I envision a village where it embraces the diversity of different cultures in Redmond while providing small businesses, and young or retired families residing within the same village. I envision that we from the city provide incentives to small businesses so they can come into the village and thrive and give back to the community. I envision light rail and other latest transportation combined with the smart city technologies to become an example for future villages in the Puget sound.
What are some goals for this upcoming term on council?
My goals are to work on solutions for bringing small businesses back again to Redmond, improve the traffic and provide means to make it easier to have affordable home in Redmond. Small Businesses are leaving Redmond due to not having enough facilities, high rents, and head taxes. The city is not affordable for the average household’s income. The traffic congestion becoming worse every year. People's voices are ignored or forgotten with the current city council members. We need a change in the city and rather than spending $41M for the concrete park in downtown which by all measures is very high we could have used that budget better by addressing some of these issues. There are so many solutions and tools for the city to use to solve these problems. We can deploy smart city solutions for traffic control and flow and provide easier permits for existing homes to use Adjacent Dwelling Units for rent and additional income. We need to give incentives through tax breaks to small businesses and provide affordable facilities for rental.