OLYMPIA – Oct. 20, 2014 – The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission has scheduled a special evening public meeting to take testimony about land classification options and proposed expansion of a ski facility at Mount Spokane State Park near Spokane.
The public comment meeting is scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 19, at Center Place Recreation Center, 2426 N. Discovery Place, Spokane. (Directions: http://mapq.st/1wkAbJJ)
The Commission is offering the Wednesday meeting to focus solely on Mount Spokane. This will be the only opportunity for verbal public comment on the Mount Spokane issues prior to the Commission’s decisions on land classification and the proposed expansion at Mount Spokane, at a regular meeting in Spokane the following day. Public testimony will be limited to three minutes per person.
Those who cannot attend the Wednesday evening public comment meeting are invited to submit written comments by e-mail or post. All written comments must be received by 5 p.m. Nov. 14, in order to be transmitted and read by Commissioners prior to the Nov. 20 decision. To send written comments:
- By e-mail, to Commission@parks.wa.gov.
- By regular mail, to Washington State parks and Recreation Commission, Attn: Becki Ellison, P.O. Box 42650, Olympia, WA 98504-2650.
The public may view the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) online at www.parks.wa.gov/856/Mount-Spokane-PASEA-Land-Classification. The draft EIS includes public comment received through Sept. 30.
Mount Spokane State Park includes an alpine ski area known as the Mount Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park, long operated under concession agreement with Mount Spokane 2000, a Spokane-area non-profit corporation. In 2010, Mount Spokane 2000 approached the Commission with a conceptual proposal to expand skiing into approximately 279 acres of an 800-acre portion of the park known as the Potential Alpine Ski Expansion Area (PASEA), an area that has not been assigned a land classification.
Options to be considered by the Commission on Nov. 20 include the following land classifications and associated potential development options:
- Natural Forest Area: Would allow no ski lift development and would limit recreation activity to Chair 4 Road as well as to a portion of a summit road and an existing mountain biking trail
- Resource Recreation and Natural Forest Area: Would allow alpine skiing as a conditional use with no lift or formal runs constructed and limited clearing of downed or damaged trees to reduce hazards for backcountry skiers
- Recreation, Resource Recreation and Natural Forest Area: Would permit ski lift development and runs and would provide for more vegetation clearing within the area designated Recreation, while offering a higher level of resource protection in the Resource Recreation portion and no development within the Natural Forest Area.
About Washington State Parks
The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages more than 100 state parks and properties totaling approximately 120,000 acres. The Commission provides a variety of recreation opportunities for citizens and provides stewardship protection for a diverse array of natural, cultural and historic resources. State Parks’ statewide programs include long-distance trails, boating safety and winter recreation.
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