How should the park system change?
State Parks asks public to weigh in
May 14, 2012, 4:21 p.m.
Should the State Parks system operate more like an enterprise-based hospitality industry, a public conservation asset based mostly on grant and tax funding – or perhaps a system of parks freely standing as community non-profit entities? What do people love about their park system, and what improvements need to be made?
These and other questions will be considered and discussed as part of a broad public outreach effort by Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission staff. Ideas are being sought through e-mail and in meetings with legislators, stakeholders and in public meetings scheduled around the state in May and June.
Information gathered will be used to create a transformation strategy that will guide the park system through the next five years and beyond. The strategic transformation plan is to be used as a successor plan to the State Parks Centennial 2013 Plan, which provided guidance for parks improvements during the past 10 years.
At the public meetings, parks staff will present the "state of state parks" and ask for ideas and comments about three "thematic alternative" visions for the future. Each of the "themes" will be explored by using a local park as an example. Participants at each meeting will have an opportunity to discuss the themes and share their ideas. Attendance is free, and a Discover Pass is not required to attend meetings held at a state park.
As the process moves forward, public comments, questions and suggestions received about the future of Washington State Parks will be made available online at www.parks.wa.gov/Beyond2013/.
Northwest Washington Public meeting locations, dates and times are as follows:
- Olympia: 7 to 8:30 p.m. June 5 Tumwater High School 700 Israel Road S.W. Olympia, WA 98501
- Seattle area: 7 to 8:30 p.m. June 6 King County Department of Development and Environmental Services 900 Oakdale Ave. S.W. Renton, WA 98057
- Burlington: 6:30 to 9 p.m. June 12 Burlington Library Burlington Rotary Community Meeting Room 820 E. Washington Ave. Burlington, WA 98233
Individuals, groups and organizations wishing to join an e-mail list for updates on the planning process are invited to use the following contact information:
- E-mail: Strategic.Planning@parks.wa.gov
- Phone: (360) 902-8504 and ask for Strategic Planning
- Mail: Washington State Parks, Strategic Planning, P.O. Box 42650, Olympia, WA 98504-2650