Habitat threatened by new trail
The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) has a project that could be a problem for wildlife habitat at Martha Washington Park, a gorgeous park on Lake Washington just south of Seward Park. The problem is a proposed trail that borders the park, where a street-end is being transformed from an abandoned blackberry-filled space into public access.
This is just one of many such street-end improvement projects SDOT has throughout the city, where they make unused street corridors into public access. It’s a great program in most locations, but in this case, it doesn’t make sense.
It would be better for people and for wildlife if the space was improved to become part of the forest habitat. It is a poor site for a trail, but would be very valuable as wildlife habitat.
The planned SDOT trail would be a shady, tunnel-like corridor, with houses on one side and the park forest on the other. It would lead to to a tiny shoreline viewpoint.
This would be fine, except that the gorgeous park is right next door, with lawns, oak prairies, and pocket beaches set against the forest backdrop and magnificent views of the lake and Mt. Rainier. Who would want to stay on a boring trail right next to houses, when the beautiful park lies just beyond?
A good trail takes people where they want to go: to the park, the beaches and the lake. So, why not build a trail that works for people and wildlife, and leave the corridor as forest habitat?
YOU CAN HELP!
Email SDOT at firstname.lastname@example.org . Reference project #3023237 SDOT Warsaw Street End Improvements. Ask them to take another look at the trail location. Ask them to work with the Parks Department to create a better trail that will serve the visitors and will improve wildlife habitat. Comments accepted until 4/29/16.