- Slides: 65
Kaiser Woods Come to the woods, for here is rest. John Muir.
The clearest way into the universe is through a forest wilderness. John Muir Kaiser Woods Sunset by Evonne Hedgepeth
Kaiser Woods Developments never die. They just come back in a new form. Andy Mc. Millan Photo: Dave Stevenson
The City’s Development Plan for a “high level concept” mountain bike park at Kaiser Woods
Concept Plan 3 The plans would add a lot more trails to KW’s already existing trails For a total of 20
It’s too much development to serve too few. Too much negative impact on the park environment Too many impacts on the park’s closest neighbors To benefit too few Olympia citizens. Kaiser Woods: Evonne Hedgepeth
Trails shared by hikers (moving slow) and bikers (moving fast) Pose a high risk for collisions
“Hikers and bikers on the same trails is not a compatible use. ” Sarah Giannobile, Kaiser Woods Planner, Olympia Recreation and Parks March, 2018 Planned Signage for Park Entrance: “Enter at Your. Own Risk” Risk! is h t s yl i m Doe fa “ d soun ly” to d frien you?
The Planning Process about Kaiser Woods So Far… Mountain Bike Park There are wiser choices!
Bikers have been at the planning table with City staff for over two years. A mountain bike group was hired to design the three bike park concept plans.
The Park’s neighbors were excluded from the process… despite promises by City staff to include them.
A Park By and For Bikers Mountain bikers will design, build and maintain the park But at whose expense? The Park cost the City 1. 6 million in tax dollars But other visitors will be allowed on the park edges only?
How Kaiser Woods was Selected as Mtn. Bike Park Four parks were considered in a feasibility study LBA Woods Watershed Park Fraser Trail Kaiser Woods Flaws in the rating of Kaiser Woods pushed it to the top of the list.
Kaiser Rd Park Drive Three possible access points into the park Park D West r. throu b g chos rook Pa h rk e vehi n as the was cle a cces only s Black Lake Blvd and 25 th
Why Park Drive? City needs easements from Thurston Cty and private owners to use Kaiser Rd or 25 th Easements cost City time and money Park Drive is a lowcost parking solution
A lot of park visitors adds sanitation issues But no restrooms?
If City doesn’t have the money to develop Kaiser Woods responsibly… Why don’t they leave it as it is until they do? Three Olympia parks currently are in “undeveloped status” due to lack of funding. Why is this park such a high priority?
Mountain Hikers Drive to Mountains to enjoy their sport Mountain Bikers Want a Mountain bike park close to home-in a City!
Other Biking Areas near Kaiser Woods 800 Acres of Manke timber land right next to the park 166 Miles of Trails in Capitol Forest within 30 minutes drive Swan Creek in Tacoma, a 30 minute drive
How many parks do mountain bikers need? There are 12 mountain bike parks in W. Wa. and 2 Olympia parks with bike skills areas.
History of “Kaiser Woods” 20062012 2015 Westbrook Park and Ken Lake neighborhoods stopped 3 huge housing developments on the site. Olympia bought the 68. 67 acres to be developed as a park. 2018 Top Photo: Dave Stevenson The City decided to develop KW as a mountain bike park/training facility. Kaiser Woods
Westbrook Park Neighborhood is Unusual Photo: Dave Stevenson Park Drive in Fall
Park Drive has no sidewalks, but lots of walkers, baby strollers, tots on bikes runners and… Some slow moving old folks!
Play on dead-end Park Drive is safe yearround.
Neighbors often stand in the middle of the road to chat. ? ? ? “Have you heard what the City is planning for the Park? !”
Four blind curves make Park Drive… Scary for backing out of driveways A high risk for collisions Photos: Dave Stevenson A bad choice for a public park access
Now if someone is seen speeding, neighbors ask them to slow down. Park visitors will not be accountable to neighbors.
Many accidents have occurred in one curve. A young biker collided with a speeding car and suffered permanent brain damage.
Concept Plan 3 What about the two wetlands on the site? That no one told the planners about!
Why are Wetlands Important to Protect? They reduce flooding They provide habitat for wildlife They filter toxins in sediment and storm run-off Kaiser Woods: Evonne Hedgepeth
Concept Plan 3 Two seasonal streams and two deep ravines in Kaiser Woods provide important habitat for wildlife.
Why are seasonal streams important? Amphibians, reptiles and other creatures breed and live there year -round.
Concept Plan 3 The wetlands and streams form a corridor and require buffers of 50 -300 feet, depending on their rating.
Required buffers for wetlands and streams will limit space available for mountain bike park development
Where will the wildlife go? Bear, cougar, elk, deer, raccoons and mink have been spotted in Kaiser Woods
Wildlife depend on the park for habitat and food
The park’s wet areas connect to others below it, then to Black Lake Wetland a salmon-bearing stream. To Puget Sound Lake k c Bla and l t e W
“Habitat Fragmentation is a Huge Issue” “Particularly in winter when wildlife move to lower elevations. ” Wetlands expert at Wa. State Dept. of Ecology K. Woods in Winter: Dave Stevenson
Mountain bikers like downhill trails for the speed, challenge and thrills Most trails in Kaiser Woods are on a downhill slope
Kaiser Woods already has several mountain bike trails! Trail Photos: Evonne Hedgepeth
Mountain bike wheels tear up trails And increase water run-off
Water also moves downhill. Westbrook Park and Ken Lake subdivisions are downhill from the park
Kaiser Woods already has stormwater run-off issues Park Entrance after a spring cloudburst Photo: Dave Stevenson
8 Westbrook Park homes lie near a stream in the park—some get flooded basements. Ken Lake neighbors also have run-off issues from the park
Current Parking at the Entrance to Kaiser Woods The City says it has no plans to build a parking lot inside the park. Photo: Dave Stevenson
Some bikers’ opinions “City’s Parks and Development staff have stepped up big time in recognizing the need and the value for a bike park in town. ” From Friends of Capitol Forest website “I won’t even go to the park to work up a sweat! I will just go through it to get to Manke trails. ” Advanced biker, Ken Lake resident “I’m strongly opposed to a mountain bike park in Kaiser Woods. Serious bikers won’t use it long. ” Mountain biker/Westbrook Park resident
A Ken Lake steward of the park is “stunned” that planning has gone this far with no neighborhood involvement.
Problems with the City’s Survey Bikers had a two month advance notice it was coming! Anyone can fill out the survey even if they don’t live in Olympia. No option provided for “NO mountain bike park!”
NO public meetings were planned by City staff, until citizen pressure was applied.
Bikers can park anywhere in Westbrook Park Subdivision And ride to the Park
Park will draw a “huge influx” of mountain bikers from the region “If that happens, home resale values in Westbrook Park will go down. ” Olympia real estate agent
If Traffic Increases on Park Drive The City suggests speed bumps to slow traffic
Biker Work Parties and Regional Meets at Kaiser Woods Will draw large crowds of bikers, their family and friends
Bikers and hikers moving along neighbors’ backyards Raises privacy and security concerns
Bikers have the right of way on all trails “My biggest fear is I’ll come behind someone and they won’t hear me and get out of the way. ” A mountain biker in Kaiser Woods Bikers’ advice to hikers? “Ring a bell anytime you walk in the park. ”
Hikers ringing bells?
The City Faces an Important Choice Accommodating the Needs of neighbors and other park users And the Needs of the park environment VS Accommodating the Desires of some citizens for a mountain bike park within City limits
“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you might find, you get what you need. ” Lyric by the Rolling Stones
The bikers’ website says they expect a “small but vocal group” of opponents at the public meeting. “Maybe they were hoping we wouldn’t notice. ” Westbrook Park resident
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has. ” Margaret Mead Photo: Carel Camerer
“It might be that at the end of this process we will conclude that none of the four parks we considered is appropriate for a mountain bike park. ” Jonathon Turlove, Asst. Director of Olympia Parks and Recreation, 2019 Photo: Dave Stevenson
What You Can Do 1. Complete the City’s survey at olympiawa. gov/bikepark before May 6. Register to participate. (“No mountain bike park at KW” can be added to comments section as a fourth option. ) 2. Write letters to the Olympia City Council 3. Write a letter to The Olympian paper 4. Share this presentation with friends, family, on Facebook and others Photo: Carel Camerer ATTEND the May 2 nd meeting at the City Council Chambers at 6: 30 p. m.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Dave Stevenson 360 -584 -3766 Acknowledgements Photos Dave Stevenson, Evonne Hedgepeth, Carel Camerer and clip art Locations of most photos Kaiser Woods Park and Westbrook Park subdivision Presentation research and design Evonne Hedgepeth, Ph. D. © April 14, 2019 Photo: Dave Stevenson Evonne Hedgepeth
“There is no repose like that of the green woods. ” John Muir Photo: Dave Stevenson
Dedicat ion This presentation is dedicated to the memory and heroic efforts of Andrew Rule Mc. Millan, without whom there would be no park at Kaiser Woods. From 2006 -2012, Andy, a wetlands biologist/manager for the Wa. St. Dept. of Ecology and a resident of Westbrook Park, spearheaded the effort to stop three successive housing developments, working with Westbrook Park and Ken Lake subdivisions, City staff and many others. During the whole time, Andy also was battling an aggressive cancer of the immune system. In 2014, Andy died before his vision for a neighborhood park could be realized. He was 55 years old.