The public comment period on the Port of Bellingham for its draft recreation, conservation and public access plan closed Monday, January 22.
The plan is updated every six years to guide development of the port’s open space, park and recreation facilities, and to ensure the port maintains eligibility for Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office grants, according to the port. Projects are ranked from 1 to 3 with one indicating that the project is funded, two that it is funded within the plan’s timeline and three meaning the project is not funded. The plan lays out the Port’s anticipated expenditures through 2030.
The port listed a number of upcoming projects in the draft plan, none of which are located in Point Roberts. Most of the projects are located at the airport, the Blaine and Squalicum harbor marinas and other Bellingham locations.
The port held an online survey from July 17 to August 21 last summer to better understand how the public uses its open spaces. Only two of the survey’s 818 respondents were Point Roberts residents.
Port commissioners are slated to vote on the draft released mid-December sometime during the first quarter of 2024.
The capital plan states “the port will assume a primary role in the development of waterfront beaches, boat launch sites, marinas, and multipurpose trails including picnic shelters, interpretative exhibits, and other natural or park-based activities which complement the port’s planned land uses and are authorized by the port’s comprehensive scheme of harbor improvements.
“The port will work with other public agencies … to create and maintain a system of interconnected trails, natural corridors, and related facilities accessing port properties and connecting community parks and public facilities as appropriate.”
The draft plan is available to review on the port’s website, at bit.ly/41SbJ8q. The commission members are port commissioners Bobby Briscoe (firstname.lastname@example.org); Michael Shepard (email@example.com); Ken Bell (firstname.lastname@example.org). Briscoe is district 3 commissioner which includes Point Roberts.
The port owns, operates and manages 1,600 acres of property in Whatcom County, including the Blaine and Squalicum harbors.
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