The announced top rankings for two parks grants from the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP). Both grants are pending legislative action.
(Grant is eligible to receive $302,328)
The WWRP’s ranking committee selected the Eddon Boat Waterfront Park Expansion as its top pick. The City will receive funds for the two undeveloped waterfront parcels adjacent to the historic Eddon Boat Building. The acquisition will expand the waterfront by more than 165 new feet of low-bank public access.
It will add to existing uses that include the boatyard’s cultural center, kayak launch, pier, open grassy area, beach and panoramic views of Gig Harbor Bay. Expanding the park will provide new trails and water access for fishing, kayaking and canoe sports.
The Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office is a state agency that manages the WWRP grant programs to create outdoor recreation opportunities, protect wildlife habitat and farmland and support salmon recovery. Since 1990, the agency has averaged 230 grant awards totaling over $60 million every fiscal year.
This grant requires a $293,927 match from the City of Gig Harbor.
(Grant is eligible to receive $180,000)
Gig Harbor’s Maritime PlayZone project came in second out of 44 statewide projects in the preliminary rankings. The award will match funds already collected by the Gig Harbor Maritime PlayZone Committee, a local volunteer group of advocates for a new all-inclusive play environment that replaces the existing play structure at Gig Harbor’s City Park at Crescent Creek on Vernhardson.
The new structure will promote youth physical activity as part of the city’s healthy harbor initiative and allow children of all abilities to experience the benefits of outdoor recreational play.
The City was the finalist in an essay contest last year and was awarded a design grant from Shane’s Inspiration, which developed the current maritime-themed design for the PlayZone.
“The Maritime Playzone is an important addition to City Park because it brings together children of all abilities to play together,” said Stephanie Payne, chairperson for the Gig Harbor Maritime PlayZone Committee. “The RCO award of $180K and the City’s commitment to contribute up to $100K is a real boost for the community. We only have another $35K to go!”
The Gig Harbor Maritime PlayZone Committee is a group of 13 community-minded individuals who have the common goal of creating a unique play environment for the children of Gig Harbor and surrounding communities.
The Washington State Budget for RCO funding is finalized in June of 2013.
For additional information regarding these grants contact Lita Dawn Stanton, City of Gig Harbor, 253-853-7609 or Stephanie Payne, PlayZone Chair at 253-549-8052.
Information by City of Gig Harbor.