News

Commissioners approve Dungeness recreation plan

by AMANDA WINTERS
Sequim Gazette


Two miles of new trails, expanded campgrounds and an entry station are all part of the recently approved Dungeness Recreation Area Master Plan.

Detailed visions for easy-access recreation, safe bike lanes and group facilities also are included in the master plan, which was unanimously approved by the Clallam County commissioners on Nov. 23.

All development included in the master plan is contingent on funding.

The plan was developed by Greenworks, P.C., from November 2006-February 2008. It was not able to be approved until now because it wasn’t compatible with a hunting lease between the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the county, said Clallam County Parks, Fair and Facilities Director Joel Winborn at the Nov. 22 commissioners’ work session.

The commissioners signed an agreement with the WDFW in August 2010 approving an additional three years of hunting at the Dungeness Recreation Area with no option to continue past that, he said.

Winborn said the master plan is set up in phases as part of the county’s 10-year plan.

Public meetings, two in 2007 and one in 2008, were conducted to give the public a chance to review and comment on the proposed master plan.

Improving safety, function
The master plan focuses on how to make the recreation area function better for the public.

To improve circulation within the recreation area, Voice of America Road facilities will be realigned and an entry contact station will be added where a parking lot is now.

The entry station will provide information for visitors, camping registration, reservations and other visitor services.

Voice of America Road will be moved at least 200 feet away from the bluff.

A traffic circle at the entry station and widening of the roads to include room for bicycles are planned in response to an increase in use and the need for safety.

Expanding recreation areas
New yurt and bicycle campgrounds will be added, along with expanded group picnic and camping areas.
Existing campgrounds will be upgraded with paved campsite pads and one of the campground loops will have electric hookups. The recently replaced rest rooms will remain intact and are expected to last at least 20 years.

The bluff picnic area will be expanded to include a small parking lot, a new picnic shelter, up to eight picnic tables, a rest room and two trail heads.

Most of the existing trails will be utilized and some will be widened or resurfaced.

Two miles of new trails will be added to extend the retained five-mile trail network and provide separate loops for bicycle, pedestrian and equestrian use.

Of the 216 acres in the recreation area, 163 will remain undisturbed.

No start date has been set for the proposed development.

Reach Amanda Winters at awinters@sequimgazette.com
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