Thirteen recreational projects in Kitsap County are the recipients of a little more than $10 million in grants awarded Wednesday by the state Recreation and Conservation Funding Board.
Two the grants are for Bainbridge Island, one for Poulsbo and one for Kingston.
In total, the board funded 342 grants across the state with more than $164 million that was matched by over $221 million in resources from grant applicants, bringing the total investment to nearly $386 million.
The grants will be spent on projects in all of Washington’s 39 counties and include projects to refurbish aging parks, maintain trails, build boating docks and conserve land used for farming and timber harvest. The grants also will conserve critical habitat for wildlife species in danger of extinction, the board says in a news release.
Topping the grant funding in Kitsap County is $2.935 million for developing the North Kitsap Divide Block Community Forest by the Great Peninsula Conservancy. The organization will use the grant to establish one of the last remaining large blocks of private timberland in northern Kitsap County as a community forest.
According to the conservancy, the 487-acre area is threatened with conversion to a 24-house development. The location is also the future route of the regionally significant Sound to Olympics Trail, which will connect the Mountains to Sound Greenway with the Olympic Discovery Trail.
The land is in an important 1,800-acre wildlife corridor, which includes Kitsap County’s 800-acre North Kitsap Heritage Park, Great Peninsula Conservancy’s 280-acre Grovers Creek Preserve and private forestland.
The Great Peninsula Conservancy will contribute $2.8 million in a federal grant.
Overall, the funds come from 10 grant programs administered by the state Recreation and Conservation Office. Grants are awarded every two years, officials said.
Local projects include:
$870,000 to Poulsbo for inclusive playground in Raab Park
The playground at the 21-acre park will include seven pieces of equipment and numerous sensory stations designed to accommodate people with physical disabilities and provide a sensory-rich experience. The 9,000-square-foot playground will feature a soft, padded synthetic surface and wheelchair-accessible ramps.
The playground is a community effort. The Poulsbo North Kitsap Rotary Club formed a partnership with the city and is co-leading the project along with the Kitsap Community Foundation, special interest groups and residents.
$749,750 to Bainbridge Island Metro Parks & Recreation District to expand Hidden Cove Park
The district will use the grant to buy a half-acre near Hidden Cove Park along the Cascade Marine Trail. The land will support a community boating program with a large dock, a shelter for instruction, equipment storage and expanded access to the waterfront.
The BI parks district will contribute $250,025 in voter-approved bonds and donated cash.
$246,000 to Port of Kingston to replace marina restroom
The Port of Kingston will use two grants to replace its 1960s-era restroom, which is upland from the port’s marina and guest dock, with one that is accessible to people with disabilities. The restroom will be a prefabricated facility open to all. The port will contribute $82,000.
$48,480 to BI Sportsmen’s Club to renovate range berm
The club will use the grant to renovate the berm at its pistol caliber range. The club will clean up the lead and metals in the existing berm, remove the dirt and sand, and replace the berm with easier-to-maintain rubber berm trap material.