Indoor rock-climbing gym planned for Bainbridge Island

A Bremerton couple hopes to build an indoor rock-climbing gym in the Coppertop Loop business park.

Jason Lawson and Michele Lang submitted an application to the city of Bainbridge Island for a conditional use permit for the new business last week.

Island Rock Gym would be built inside the building formerly used by Gravitec Systems, Inc., before the company moved to Poulsbo. It would be located at 9437 Copper Top Loop.

In his application to the city, Lawson said the gym requires a four-month buildout after permits are received, and the business would then immediately open to the public.

He also said the new enterprise would be compatible with others in the complex, which include businesses devoted to strength training, a ballet and pilates studio, and a physical therapy clinic.

Lawson said there would be no new impacts to neighboring properties other than additional cars in the parking lot during the peak hours for the gym, which are expected to be from 6 to 8 p.m. weekday evenings and weekend afternoons when other tenants will not be on-site.

Island Rock Gym would be open to all ages and abilities, and plans to offer open climbing, instructional youth climbing programs, adult classes and event rentals, such as for birthday parties.

"Our business is a great benefit to island residents," Lawson said in his permit application. "Individuals and participants have an opportunity to learn about themselves and how to work as a group and individually to achieve a goal. Participants learn to challenge themselves by expanding their comfort zone."

Lawson also said that Island Rock Gym would be a "low impact" business.

"We are educational with a great civic benefit to schools, church groups, recreational programs and individual exercise," he said.

The comment period on the conditional use permit for the gym runs for 21 days; comments must be received by 4 p.m. March 29.

Comments can be sent to Joshua Machen, City of Bainbridge Island, Department of Planning & Community Development, 280 Madison Ave. N., Bainbridge Island, WA 98110; or fax at 206-780-0955; email


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