OLYMPIA - The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission invites the public to discuss alternatives for the future of Fort Canby State Park.

A public workshop is scheduled for 7 p.m., March 26 in the newly restored theater at Fort Columbia State Park, located two miles east of Chinook on U.S. Highway 101.

State Parks staff will present three alternative master planning approaches. Each alternative places a different emphasis on the value of certain park resources and makes different assumptions about natural and human affects on the park. Highlights include:

• Restoration/healing: In this alternative, assuming that coastal erosion processes will completely eliminate the existing campground, the main park would become a day-use destination, with replacement camping - if any - located outside the long-term park boundary. The agency would expand the park to include additional land for shoreline and coastal forest protection and restoration; would place administrative facilities at the periphery of the park and develop auto parking inside the park for non-peak periods; and would provide a park shuttle system for peak use periods.

• Interpretation: In this alternative, assuming that coastal erosion processes will eliminate half of the existing campground, a new campground north of Beard's Hollow would replace the lost campsites. State Parks would create an extensive multi-modal transportation system to link visitors to a network of interpretive sites; would develop bicycle and pedestrian trails; would construct a transient boat moorage dock for tour ships; and would provide enhanced interpretative opportunities to tell the stories of the coastal defense system, navigation facilities, use of the site by American Indians and the era of exploration.

• Recreation: In this alternative, assuming systematic beach feeding efforts will halt coastal erosion processes, a range of camping opportunities - from primitive camping to rustic cabins and yurts - would expand by 50 percent above current levels. State Parks would provide expanded trail systems for bicyclists, pedestrians and equestrians. The agency also would dredge and fill wetland systems to expand open water for freshwater recreation and to provide sea-viewing opportunities by a jetty boardwalk.

All alternatives consider, to varying degrees:

• A single point of contact into the park for park orientation and vehicle parking permit fee collection.

• A park transit system to handle peak access to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center and other park destinations.

• Changes in the long-term boundary of the park to protect significant resources and provide opportunities for recreation and efficient administration.

To receive an information packet with details of the alternatives, contact Tina Freeman at (360) 902-8608, tina.freeman@parks.wa.gov or Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, P.O. Box 42650, Olympia WA 98504-2650.

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