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Proposed Port Gamble dock subject of public open house Nov. 7

PORT GAMBLE — Olympic Property Group, a subsidiary of Pope Resources, will host a public open house on Nov. 7 to discuss the community dock proposed for the Port Gamble waterfront.

The open house will be an opportunity for North Kitsap residents to learn about the proposed dock. Company representatives will make a presentation that includes an overview of the proposed dock, its location and its potential benefits to the community. A question and answer session will follow.

The open house is scheduled from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in  the Hood Canal Vista Pavilion in Port Gamble. According to OPG president Jon Rose, the dock will accommodate up to nine boats — below the state’s threshold of 10 boats for the dock to be considered a marina. That’s been a major concern for the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe, which fears that a marina would result in shellfish closures.

“The dock will facilitate a connection between the town and the water for commerce and recreational uses that have existed since the inception of the town in 1853,” Rose said in a press release.

The proposed dock would include an abutment, pier, truss, and gangway, as well as a primary float, seaplane float, and kayak launching float. Rose said the dock proposal incorporates a number of changes that address concerns from various agencies and potential users.

The dock is part of the upcoming evolution of Port Gamble — from mill town to historic tourism destination to year-round community. An environmental impact statement has been completed on the town’s proposed redevelopment plan, which includes construction of a hotel, stores,  restaurants, and approximately 200 new homes and a neighborhood pavilion. Century-old homes owned by Pope Resources would be sold.

An agricultural district is proposed, with a farmers market, orchard, production garden, vineyards, and a landscape and horticultural center. Plans also include a waterfront boardwalk, nature trails and parks.

Concomitantly, Pope Resources and the state Department of Ecology are working to finalize the clean-up action plan for Port Gamble Bay, which is expected to be completed by year end. Clean-up activities are expected to take a few years to complete. The company anticipates that the dock will be constructed after the environmental clean-up of the dock project area has been completed.

Also, proponents of the North Kitsap Forest & Bay Coalition are expected to complete the purchase of Pope’s North Kitsap forestland, which will be used as public open space, in March. The coalition has raised enough money to purchase the Shoreline Block, which consists of 564 acres and 1.8 miles of shoreline; and the Heritage Park Expansion Block, 366 acres.

Pope and the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe are discussing the sale and purchase of the Hansville Block, 1,784 acres. Remaining: The Port Gamble Upland Block, 3,316 acres; and the Divide Block, 664 acres.

 

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