Physical development of a new 18-hole disc golf course east of Sequim was paused in March, but efforts to move the project ahead continue.
Work at the site ceased after residents living near the proposed course expressed concerns about its creation. A petition opposing the course with 25 signatures was received by Clallam County Parks, Fair and Facilities officials and multiple public comments were heard from nearby residents at the Clallam County Parks Board May meeting.
Most comments focused on the potential of “additional traffic” and “loss of privacy,” according to the board’s minutes.
However, after discussing the public input, park board members voted unanimously to continue with the construction of the 20-acre disc golf course within the 40 acres of undeveloped, county-owned property on Thompson Road.
“We feel that this kind of park won’t have much impact and compared to other uses. It’s a nice option,” said Bruce Giddens, Clallam County Parks and Fair supervisor.
In July of 2015, county officials submitted the necessary paperwork to rezone the property from Rural Low to Parks and Recreation to the county’s Department of Community Development. The application will be processed along with other rezoning applications in September or October, Giddens said. In the meantime, efforts to secure signage for the course will continue through the summer. Other equipment, such as the baskets and benches have been obtained.
“We’ve been able to take advantage of a lot of volunteer labor, donated material and equipment,” Giddens said.
Already, the parking lot has been mapped out and the space for the first hole has been cleared.
Scheduling volunteers to start again on the construction of the course by thinning and chipping more trees, removing invasive plant species and installing the needed infrastructure is expected begin in the fall.
“We would like to have the course done by the end of the year,” Giddens said. “A lot of the progress depends on the amount of volunteers.”
The property and its varying terrain, including both open space and trees as natural obstacles make for a good course design, Giddens said. Similar to the growing number of disc golf courses throughout the country, the county’s park officials envision the low-impact park being user friendly for people of all ages and economic status.
Also, when settling on the decision to pursue a disc golf course, the implementation of one proved economically feasible in comparison to other park possibilities. In 2013, park officials estimated the cost of the disc golf course at $13,700 versus a playground estimated to cost $55,000 or baseball field at $230,000.
For anyone interested in volunteering, e-mail Giddens at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For county updates on the disc golf course, visit www.clallam.net/Parks.