Letters to the Editor

WSF’s $2 milion should go to city dock project | Letters | Nov. 4

The Bainbridge Island Harbor Commission will be making a presentation to the City Council at its meeting on Nov. 9 to redevelop the Waterfront Park City Dock and adjoining recreation area.

Islanders will recall that the city chose to take the Washington State Ferries (WSF) offer of $2 million and waive all claims to any development rights on their maintenance facility. The Harbor Commission, composed of islanders appointed by council and with strong support from the boating community, firmly believe this money should only be used for waterfront developments.

A City Dock project would be a very appropriate project for a substantial portion of these funds.

The present 25-year-old City Dock was never designed or constructed to accommodate all the recreational users that now vie for space and access. In addition to visiting yachts and craft being launched and recovered from trailers, the following all updated and safe facilities: Bainbridge Island Rowers, park district summer sailing and kayaking programs, visiting tall ships and heritage vessels as well as recreational rowers and kayakers.

The Harbor Commission is working with area professionals to draw up plans for a new dock to accommodate visiting vessels that will be ADA accessible, with electrical and freshwater outlets, as well as a new pump-out station. A separate dock and low level float for the many rowers, kayakers and other hand carried craft is also planned to separate them from the motorized craft.

Eagle Harbor is a gem, but it lacks a first-rate waterfront facility worthy of our island maritime heritage. By investing in our existing property, using funds from the WSF settlement and grants intended for such developments – without any additional taxes – we can provide Bainbridge Island with a waterfront facility of which we can be proud and enjoy for decades to come.

Visitors from Seattle will again be attracted to Eagle Harbor as a destination port, explore nearby downtown Winslow and spend their money in our fine galleries, shops and restaurants.

We encourage all concerned citizens to come to the City Council meeting on Nov. 9 at 5:30 p.m. to hear the details of the Waterfront Park City Dock revitalization proposal and to show your support for this project.

Mark Leese, chair

Harbor Commission

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