In another item: Incendiary found in unfinished home.

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Construction of the new Redmond City Hall is on target and the steel frame of the building is nearing completion.

Construction and steel workers, city officials, team consultants and contractors will hold a “topping out” celebration later this month. Tradition holds that topping out a building assures good fortune for its inhabitants. The new city hall is expected to open in December.

Topping out is when the uppermost steel piece is put into place and the structure has reached its height. As part of the topping out tradition — one of the oldest customs in the construction industry — an evergreen tree and American flag have been perched atop the new city hall structure. The tree is to signal that the job went up without loss of life.


Incendiary found in unfinished home

An unexploded “incendiary device” found in a home under construction in the Redmond area March 3 was discovered in the Redmond Ridge urban village, federal officials said yesterday.

The device may have been similar to devices found in arsons or attempted arsons in Sammamish and Snohomish County, said Julianne Marshall, spokeswoman for the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

The ATF is investigating possible connections between the incidents, which stretch back to April 2004. Federal officials are also investigating the possible involvement of the Earth Liberation Front, a radical environmental activist group.

Redmond Ridge is a 1,000-acre development that will eventually include as many as 4,500 homes. The device was found in the Trails subdivision, owned by CamWest.

The Washington Insurance Council and Arson Alarm Foundation are offering a $10,000 award for information that leads to an arrest in the attempted arson Wednesday in Sammamish. Anyone with tips can call 800-552-7766.