Alternate view of the Carpenter Creek estuary from the West Kingston Bridge. (Tyler Shuey/Kisap News Group)

Alternate view of the Carpenter Creek estuary from the West Kingston Bridge. (Tyler Shuey/Kisap News Group)

Kingston Stillwaters Environmental Center celebrates Estuary Liberation Day

An event 18 years in the making has finally come to fruition as Stillwaters Environmental Center celebrated it’s Estuary Liberation Day on Saturday.

KINGSTON — An event 18 years in the making has finally come to fruition as Stillwaters Environmental Center celebrated it’s Estuary Liberation Day on June 9. The event featured live music, food, recognition of project partners and tours of the marsh with binocular viewings.

“It’s kind of amazing because it went on for so long,” Administrative Director of Stillwaters Environmental Center Naomi Maasberg said. “The construction from 2010 onwards became really intense.”

The celebration of the estuary comes after the long-awaited completion of two bridges in Kingston, the other being on South Kingston Road that was built in 2012. The completion of the West Kingston Bridge earlier this year had many benefits, including replacing culverts that enclosed Puget Sound tidal flow between Apple Tree Cove and the Carpenter Creek estuary, preventing fish migration out of Central and South Puget Sound. Having a 150-foot span bridge opens up the upper salt marsh and restores natural functioning of the estuary habitat, accessible to wildlife. The project also added 10 acres to the estuary.

“Salt marshes are the richest habitat in terms of producing food for wildlife,” Maasberg said. “To have that restricted and damaged by not having a decent flow of tidal water is just criminal because there’s not many salt marshes left.”

As part of an agreement with the Suquamish Tribe, the Navy provided nearly $3 million for the project as a portion of its mitigation for a maintenance pier at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. The remainder $4.6 million was funded by Kitsap County Public Works road and sewer funds and Kitsap Public Utility District No. 1. The state legislature and the Army Corps of Engineers funded the South Kingston Bridge project.

With the completion of these two projects, Stillwaters intends to focus in the near future on research from its internship program. The Stillwaters internship program is continuing to grow, directing students from The University of Washington and Western Washington University’s Huxley College of the Environment. Maasberg reiterated that they want to get the interns more involved in a research area and keep expanding the program in general.

Tyler Shuey is a reporter for Kitsap News Group. He can be reached at tshuey@soundpublish ing.com.

More in News

Kiwanis honors eight SK Students of the Month

Port Orchard chapter recognizes high school and middle school students at luncheon

Woodstove ashes spark Monday night blaze

Avoid similar incidents with safe disposal of ashes

Poulsbo approves surplus goods, ILA and lease for cell tower

Multiple items on the Poulsbo City Council’s consent agenda were approved by… Continue reading

Family, public respond to footage from fatal police shooting

On Nov. 12 the North Kitsap Herald received another release of documents… Continue reading

City of Bremerton mulls zoning changes to allow homeless encampments

Recent data indicates 58 percent of the county’s unsheltered population is in Bremerton

City of Bremerton assistant attorney charged with third-degree assault and DUI

Casey C. Pence allegedly kicked a state trooper after having a BAC of .224

Investigators release body camera footage from July 3 shooting

On Tuesday investigators with the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office released body camera… Continue reading

Santa’s on his way to Port Orchard!

Jolly Old St. Nick to hand out treats to good boys and girls

Toys for Tots drop-off is in Port Orchard

Edward Jones office is taking unwrapped gifts

Most Read