8 Pierce County projects earn state wildlife, recreation grants

The Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) released a complete list of projects funded through the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP) at a June 22 hearing in Olympia.

Projects funded in Pierce County include the following:

— Peninsula Metropolitan Park will use the $1.26 million DeMolay Property Acquisition grant to protect locally treasured shoreline on Fox Island from development and to create a park that will provide waterfront access;

— The City of Sumner will use the $979,000 Sumner Urban to Mountain Trail grant to build the missing link for 38 continuous miles of trail from Seattle’s Interurban Trail to the Foothills Trail;

— The $587,372 Nisqually State Park acquisitions grant will be used to purchase two properties immediately outside of Nisqually State Park that are slated for development;

— The City of University Place will use the $750,000 Leach Creek grant to create a community park with playfields, picnic shelters and walking paths;

— The Town of Eatonville will use the $700,000 Bud Blancher Memorial Trail grant to create a multi use trail that connects to the UW’s Pack Forest;

— The City of Tacoma will use the $500,000 Franklin Park Development grant to improve the existing park and replace a wading pool with a spray ground;

— Pierce County will use $125,000 Frontier Park Renovation-Inclusive Playground grant to replace unsafe playground equipment;

— Pierce County will use the $100,000 Playground by the Sound grant to build a community playground within the local trail system at Chambers Creek Properties.

A complete list of projects is available at wildliferecreation.org. The Legislature approved $42 million for more than 55 projects statewide.

“It’s tough to find the resources to protect and enhance areas that contribute to our amazing quality of life,” said Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy. “I’m really proud of the effort by state and local leaders to support this grant program so that we can enjoy pristine lands and clean waterways for years to come.”

According to WWRP and RCO officials, parks and recreation-based activities annually generate some $8.5 billion in retail dollars and millions in tax dollars, supporting 115,000 jobs statewide.