POULSBO — Money freed by the Legislature’s approval of the Capital Budget will enable the city to buy what Mayor Becky Erickson calls “the last piece of undeveloped property on Liberty Bay within the city limits.”
The city will receive $400,000 toward the purchase of the land, about four acres described by city Parks and Recreation Director Mary McCluskey as being located off Viking Avenue, south of Liberty Road and between 5th Avenue and a city waterfront trail.
Erickson said of the land, “It’s important for us to preserve that land … We still have money to raise, but this is a huge step.”
If the property is acquired, McCluskey said there will be a public process to determine what the park will look like. Ultimately, she believes it will be a combination of open space and a neighborhood park. This shoreline property “fits in nicely” with city’s long-term plans, she said, which is why it was on her capital improvement plan for years.
“It gives the public another possibility of getting to the water, even if they don’t live on the water,” McCluskey said.
The state Legislature approved its $4.2 billion Capital Budget on Jan. 18, after resolving a dispute over water rights.
Among the agencies and projects awaiting funding in Kitsap:
- Fort Ward Community Hall, Bainbridge Island: $92,000.
- Islandwood Community Dining Hall and Kitchen, Bainbridge Island: $200,000.
- ARC Community Center renovation, Bremerton: $81,000.
- Holly Ridge Center Building, Bremerton: $475,000.
- Manette Park renovation, Bremerton: $500,000.
- Ostrich Creek culvert improvements, Bremerton: $4.68 million.
- Pine Basin Watershed storm sewer improvements, Bremerton: $3.88 million.
- Quincy Square on Fourth, Bremerton: $250,000.
- Downtown Pocket Park at Rockwell, Port Orchard: $309,000.
- Port Orchard Marina breakwater refurbishment, Port Orchard: $1 million
- Morrow Manor (long-term transitional housing for domestic violence survivors and their children), Poulsbo: $773,000.
- North Kitsap Fishline’s Comprehensive Services Center: $530,000.
- Peninsula Community Health Services, Poulsbo: $395,000.
- Poulsbo Outdoor Salmon Observation Area, Poulsbo: $475,000.
- West Poulsbo parkland acquisition, Poulsbo: $400,000.
- Kitsap Regional Library Foundation, Silverdale Library: $250,000.
- In addition, four existing or proposed parks are alternates for funding from the state conservation fund: Central Park, Bainbridge Island; Morrow Manor Neighborhood Park, Poulsbo; Silverdale Waterfront Day Use improvements; and South Kitsap Regional Park facility improvements.
Erickson said she expects to know this week when the money will be disbursed.
The delay in funding created some headaches for organizations on the list, Erickson said. Costs of construction went up while projects were stalled, and some fundraising depended on receiving the state funding. The delay “affected just about every one of [the organizations],” she said. “Whenever funding is delayed, you have to start thinking about alternative sources. All those other plans were being formulated to find other funding for organizations.”
The money couldn’t come too soon for North Kitsap Fishline, which is building a Comprehensive Services Center that will house several human services agencies. Mary Nader, Fishline’s executive director, said in an email that her project’s original budget of $2.7 million has grown to $3.7 million because of “increases in materials, a decision to complete the entire building before opening and the incorporation of prevailing wages for all trades. We are about two-thirds of the way there.”
She said the proposed sale of Fishline’s Second Season Home Store and the state funding are “the most anticipated contributions going forward.”
— Jacob Moore is a reporter for Kitsap News Group. Contact him at email@example.com. Richard Walker contributed to this story.