It has become very clear how few Port Townsend residents really benefit from golf. Not from the green space, but from the golf that has kept over 95 percent of PT residents off this green space for …
It has become very clear how few Port Townsend residents really benefit from golf. Not from the green space, but from the golf that has kept over 95 percent of PT residents off this green space for years. Yes we do need green space, but we do not need golf.
So my comment to the city council, city staff, and fellow residents of Port Townsend is a plea: a plea that we open up this entire large public property to the everyone. We need the Central Park option.
There is plenty of evidence that access to the natural environment and green space enhances our lives physically and mentally.
With less mowed grass, and with more native shrubs and trees, this green space can become true “green lungs” for this part of the town. We will need that as surrounding private property gets developed.
Let us take advantage of this amazing opportunity now. We can make this town better by opening up this property to all residents and visitors. A park here will provide hundreds of residents with the easy non-motorized access to green space that is not available to them now. A park here will reduce car trips for nearby residents and improve their daily lives. At the same time this large open space can, and should, include special amenities with some parking for those living further away. There is space here for more nature: native plants, birds, and small animal habitat to enrich the area, and also for trails, active play space, a space for music and performances, picnic areas, and food vendors. These 50-plus acres can become an amazing spot for relaxation, exercise, and fun, while they give us cleaner air and healthier wildlife.
I hope we can all envision this: walking and running trails throughout, a bit more parking along San Juan and on the south end, and perhaps a modest accessible playground. The community gathering space on the plan could start as a simple space for two to three food trucks on weekends, some picnic tables, and a set up for bean-bag toss and other simple outdoor games. Perhaps a row of modestly equipped townhouses along San Juan at the southwest corner (on a bus route and near grocery stores) could provide housing to moderate income residents.
I hope we do not waste this amazing opportunity to keep Port Townsend healthy, and make all parts of town beautiful places to live.
I will take a moment to speak to the golf lovers. I know that you love to play golf here, or just love knowing that others do. But please try to understand that your game is so specialized, and cannot appeal to many. So we are shut out, by messaging and clear signs that this 55-plus acres of public property is for golfers only. It is a fact that this course is often empty or only used by a handful of people even in fine weather. Please try to understand that those who cannot relate to hitting a little white ball have a right to enjoy this space.
We need to choose the Central Park option. This is a historic decision that can improve Port Townsend for many years to come.