The potential deforestation of a 150-acre tract of land surrounding LBA Park in Southeast Olympia poses problems to residents in our community. This forested land provides vital stormwater retention services to Chambers Basin, and also offers wildlife habitat. At different times in the year, over 50 species of birds, as well as larger animals such as deer, find refuge in these woods.
I grew up running on these trails with other members of the Olympia High School cross-country team. The forest was a peaceful escape from the noise and exhaust we routinely experienced when running on city streets. It would be truly devastating for the Olympia community to lose this slice of wilderness.
In 2004, Olympia voters approved bonding capacity to finance precisely the type of purchase necessary to preserve these woods. Such bonding capacity, along with limited public and private donations can make LBA Woods Park a protected space that generations of Olympians can enjoy. Along with beautiful nature trails, this park might also offer soccer fields, a community garden, or perhaps an off-leash dog area on the fringes of the forest.
Close to 1,300 people have now signed an online petition asking the City of Olympia to work toward conserving this land.