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In analyzing capital financing over twenty years, the City must make estimates in two areas: Cost of New Facilities and the Cost to Maintain Existing Facilities. To estimate the former, the City must evaluate its established levels of service (LOS) for the various types of facilities - streets, parks, recreational facilities, open space, trails, and public buildings -- and project future needed investments to reach those service targets. In this case, “Level of Service” refers to the quantitative measure for a given capital facility. See Table 2. In establishing an LOS standard, the community can make reasonable financial choices among the various “infrastructure” facilities that serve the local population.

Fortunately, Mercer Island has already acquired and/or built most of the facilities needed to meet its LOS goals (e.g. parks acreage, recreational facilities, water and sewer system capacity, street system capacity, police, fire and administration buildings). As a result, while a few “LOS deficiencies” must be addressed over the next twenty years (open space, new trail construction, some street capacity improvements), most capital financing projections for Mercer Island involve reinvesting in and maintaining existing assets.

Listed in Table 2 below is a summary of level of service and financial assumptions (by facility type) used in making a twenty year expenditure forecast. In looking at the assumptions and projections, the reader should bear in mind two things: 1) No detailed engineering or architectural design has been made to estimate costs. The numbers are first level estimates; and, 2) the objective of the analysis is to predict where major financing issues may arise in the future. The estimates should be used for long range financial and policy planning; not as budget targets.

Table 2 – Level of Service & Financial Forecasts

Capital Facility

Level of Service Standard

Capital Needs

New Capital Cost (To address deficiency)

Annual Reinvestment Cost


-    Residential

-    CBD




4 locations identified


4 locations identified







Parks & Open Space

Expenditure per capita

Dock Infrastructure, Safe Facilities, Open Space, Trails and Athletic Fields

$8 million

$1.3 million. Parks & Open Space CIP

Recreational Facilities

See Park & Open Space Plan




Existing and New Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities

Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities Plan

Shoulder improvements, 78th Ave. pedestrian and bike improvements, safe routes to school

$8 million


Open Space

Expenditure per capita

Standard to be set

To be assessed


Water System Supply



Fire Flow

6.7 mill. Gal/day

8.0 mill. Gal

> 30 psi










$4.8 million

Storm & Surface Water System

Washington DOE

Stormwater Manual


$425,000 from Utility Rates on average goes to one major basin improvement project annually

$1.1 million

Sanitary Sewer System

0 - Sewer Overflows

Inflow & Infiltration Sewer Lakeline-portion of reaches

$26 million

$1 million


Established in the

Mercer Island School

District No. 400 Six

Year Capital Facilities

Plan as may be amended.

Maintenance of existing buildings, new elementary school, middle school and high school expansions

$98.8 million bond

$9 million levy passed February 2010

Parking Facilities*

To be assessed*

To be assessed*

To be assessed*

To be assessed*

*An analysis is in progress, capital needs and costs to be evaluated pending completion of studies, after completion of light rail.

[Note: More detailed LOS standards for capacity, operational reliability, and capital facilities needs can be found in the following documents: Transportation Improvement Plan, Water System Plan, General Sewer Plan, Comprehensive Storm Basin Review, Park and Open Space Plan, Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities Plan, Open Space Vegetation Plan, Parks and Recreation Plan 2014-2019, Luther Burbank Master Plan, Ballfield Use Analysis, and the Transportation Element of this Comprehensive Plan.