Explorer Dog!


Offleash Areas: Westcrest Park

After a valiant fight to recover trails that had been part of the original public-process-approved plans for Westcrest, the Seattle City Council voted not to include the lower trails as part of the new Westcrest design. When it comes time for re-election votes, don't forget how your councilmembers voted!

Subj: colainfo Westcrest OLA loses the Loop Trail 
Date: 2/7/2003 9:10:53 AM Pacific Standard Time 
From:    cola@coladog.org
 
[On Monday, Feb. 3], the City Council voted 6-3 and refused to include the lower
loop trail as part of the Westcrest Park OLA.  We are disappointed that a
majority of the Council refused to recognize countless hours of volunteer
efforts from members of the West Seattle Community Action Network (WeCAN),
numerous public meetings and a community consensus on the lower loop trail.
This would have added a special Off-Leash exercise experience for those many
neighborhood users who enjoy walking along the lower trails at Westcrest
Park.

The Seattle Times has a small article in the Local Section of the 02/04
paper.  It basically sums up the council vote, though it does not report how
each council member voted.  A link to the article is provided at the COLA
web site.  Visit www.coladog.org and click on Seattle Times under news and
information on the home page.

Heidi Wills, Jim Compton, and Nick Licata expressed initial support early on
and then wavered, changed their minds and voted against the lower loop
trail.  I believe Council President Peter Steinbrueck's unrelenting
hostility to the lower loop trail was a deciding factor in their flip-flop
and the negative votes from the council members.  Please feel free to let
these and the other three council members know how you feel about their
negative vote.

At this point I would like to ask that you email and thank Jan Drago, Judy
Nicastro, and Margaret Pageler for their unwavering support.  All three
spoke in strong terms of their support for Seattle's Off-Leash Areas, and
unselfishly spoke up in their support of the lower loop trail despite
insistent opposition from Peter Steinbrueck and Richard Conlin.

Finally, we would like to thank you and the hundreds of supporter that
contacted city council over the past two weeks.  It is only because of your
active participation and vocal support that our Off-Leash Areas exist today.

Folks who are interested in discussing off-leash area issues online are
invited to join the COLA email discussion list by sending a blank email to
offleash-subscribe@coladog.org . Please be sure to leash your dogs when you
head out along the lower wooded trails at Westcrest Park.

Thanks and I'll see you in the dog park!

Jerry Malmo, Chair
Citizens for Off-Leash Areas

Voted For the Lower Loop Trail
Jan Drago (206) 684-8801  Jan.Drago@Seattle.gov
Judy Nicastro (206) 684-8806  Judy.Nicastro@Seattle.gov
Margaret Pageler  (206) 684-8807  Margaret.Pageler@Seattle.gov

Voted Against the Lower Loop Trail
Jim Compton (206) 684-8802  Jim.Compton@Seattle.gov
Richard Conlin (206) 684-8805  Richard.Conlin@Seattle.gov
Nick Licata (206) 684-8803  Nick.Licata@Seattle.gov
Richard McIver (206) 684-8800  Richard.McIver@Seattle.gov
Peter Steinbrueck (206) 684-8804  Peter.Steinbrueck@Seattle.gov
Heidi Wills (206) 684-8808  Heidi.Wills@Seattle.gov

Council Message Center  council@Seattle.gov
(206) 684-8888 Call this number to leave a message for any council member.


--------------------------------------

A BRIEF HISTORY ON THIS ISSUE:

--------------------------------------

Subj: colainfo February 3 Council Vote on OLA Boundary 
Date: 1/29/2003 10:42:14 PM Pacific Standard Time 
From:    jamalmo@qwest.net

Westcrest Park OLA boundary changes are scheduled for a vote before the full
City Council this Monday February 3, at 2:00p.m.  Correction: It is a business meeting, not
a public hearing, so testimony will not be taken.  You can best help by emailing
and calling your council members.

If you have not called and sent an email [to the council, emails below]
 - now is the time, be sure to do
both.  Also, please attend this important hearing to voice your support for
Seattle's Off-Leash areas.  Even if you do not frequent Westcrest, this
issue is critical for all Seattle OLA users.  If you can't attend, call
again on Monday Feb 3 to remind your council members to support Council Bill
#114406.  People from all over the city who oppose off-leash areas are
literally flooding the council with negative messages on off-leash areas.

We need to remind the council that OLA users are one of the largest and
active park user groups in the city.

-------------------

Subj: colainfo Westcrest Park Offleash Trails  
Date: 1/2/2003 2:51:14 PM Pacific Standard Time 
From: pauline.m.marshall@boeing.com 

WHY DOES THE OFFLEASH AREA NEED YOUR HELP?
The Parks Department released its final design for Westcrest Park on July
23rd.  The downside is that in the new plan, the OLA does not include any
access to the trails for off-leash use.  This is very disappointing to WeCAN
(Westcrest Community Action Network) and the dozens of volunteers who held
numerous community meetings and put in countless hours of volunteer time to
improve the OLA and trails. The loop trail in the mixed deciduous forest was
included in the original plan.  However, when Westcrest became part of the
Pro Parks levy, a new round of public meetings was held and the Park
Commissioners took the recommendation of the project manager and EXCLUDED
the loop trail from the final plan.

THANK YOU!   WOOF!


--------------------


Subj: colainfo COLA Call To Action! 
Date: 1/24/2003 3:53:56 AM Pacific Standard Time 
From:    jamalmo@qwest.net
 
Off-Leash Area Supporters

As you may know, the Seattle Westcrest OLA is currently undergoing a
redesign that at one point included the lower wooded trails.  Parks
Department excluded the trails from the final plan but this afternoon,
Seattle City Council Members Jan Drago and Judy Nicastro amended the bill to
include the lower trails.  There was vocal opposition from a number of
folks, including Council President Peter Steinbrueck.  Mr. Steinbrueck voted
against the amended bill, and said he would "urge his fellow council members
to vote against the amended bill" when it goes before the full council in
two weeks.  Mr. Steinbrueck said he received many emails opposing the OLA
trails and only a couple emails in support of OLA trails.  Opposition is
building.

Now is the time for action.  The bill will go before the entire City Council
in two weeks.   Please contact the Seattle City Council and ask them to
support Council Bill #114406 that includes the lower loop trail in the
Westcrest Park Off-Leash Area.

Here are some points you can mention:

  • Off leash use keeps the trails from being unsafe and under used.
  • After numerous and well publicized WeCAN! community meetings and input, a design was completed in June 2000 that included improvements to trails, picnic areas, a children's play ground, and OLA that included the all the lower wooded trails.
  • During the ProParks design process the Parks Department excluded the lower trails from the final design despite strong community support.
  • The amended council bill includes the lower loop trail and is a good community compromise that COLA and Westcrest OLA users support.
  • The lower trails were included in the SEPA environmental checklist, and Parks Superintendent Ken Bounds issued a determination of non-significance on June 13, 2002.
  • Many dog owners enjoy the exercise benefits of walking or running with their dogs. Access to wooded trails greatly enhances this experience as it offers a variety of terrain with hills; provides protection from the rain; and is consistently cooler in the hot summer months.
  • The COLA steward group at Westcrest will work closely with the Parks Department to maintain the lower trails, limit use exclusively to the trails, and protect the wooded habitat.
  • WE LOVE "WALKING" OUR DOGS..NOT ONLY WATCHING THEM PLAY!
Please email and call your council members today! Jim Compton (206)684-8802 Jim.Compton@Seattle.gov Richard Conlin (206)684-8805 Richard.Conlin@Seattle.gov Nick Licata (206)684-8803 Nick.Licata@Seattle.gov Richard McIver (206)684-8800 Richard.McIver@Seattle.gov Margaret Pageler (206)684-8807 Margaret.Pageler@Seattle.gov Peter Steinbrueck (206)684-8804 Peter.Steinbrueck@Seattle.gov Heidi Wills (206)684-8808 Heidi.Wills@Seattle.gov Council Message Center council@Seattle.gov (206)684-8888 Call this number to leave a message for any council member. Jan Drago (206)684-8801 Jan.Drago@Seattle.gov Judy Nicastro (206)684-8806 Judy.Nicastro@Seattle.gov ***Please Thank Jan Drago and Judy Nicastro for sponsoring the amendment that added the lower trails to the Council Bill. Because of the their efforts we have a chance to secure the trails for off-leash use at Westcrest Park. ---------------------------- Date: 1/28/2003 10:56:19 PM Pacific Standard Time From: jamalmo@qwest.net Off-Leash Area Supporters City council is being flooded with opposition calls over the Westcrest OLA loop trail. If you have not contacted the council, please do so now, the time has never been more critical. Please email, call and write. The Council vote will probably take place next week. Also, if you can attend the hearing, I strongly encourage you to do so. I will notify the email list with the date and time when the vote is officially scheduled. As you may know, the Seattle Westcrest OLA has undergone a redesign that at one point included the lower wooded trails. Parks Department excluded the trails from the final plan but this afternoon, Seattle City Council Members Jan Drago and Judy Nicastro amended the bill to include the lower trails. There was vocal opposition from a number of folks, including Council President Peter Steinbrueck. Mr. Steinbrueck voted against the amended bill, and said he would "urge his fellow council members to vote against the amended bill" when it goes before the full council in two weeks. Mr. Steinbrueck said he received many emails opposing the OLA trails and only a couple emails in support of OLA trails. Opposition is building. Now, more than ever, is the time for action. The bill will go before the entire City Council soon. Please contact the Seattle City Council and ask them to support Council Bill #114406 that includes the lower loop trail in the Westcrest Park Off-Leash Area.
Directions: It's located at 8th SW in West Seattle, intersecting Henderson and Roxbury. The Henderson side is closest to the offleash area but offers scary and slim parking options. The Roxbury side is the official entrance with a parking lot. Here are 2 ways to get there. Go West Seattle Freeway, take Delridge, follow Delridge south to Roxbury. Left on Roxbury to park. Or go Highway 99S, follow signs to West Marginal Way. Turn left on Highland, and follow it around up the hill and it will lead you to the park.


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