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Olympia has 13 acres of undeveloped waterfront to play with. Any suggestions?

A man bikes through West Bay Park shortly after it opened in 2010.
A man bikes through West Bay Park shortly after it opened in 2010. Olympian file photo

Imagine walking from West Bay Park in Olympia to Percival Landing without ever leaving a waterfront trail.

It could happen, but it is still a few years away.

The city bought 17 acres on the west side of West Bay back in 2007 from the Port of Olympia and BNSF Railway. Now officials want to hear from the community on what should happen there next.

So far, 4 acres across from Brawne Avenue Northwest has been developed into West Bay Park in partnership with local Rotary clubs. Thirteen acres south of the park stretching down to the Fifth Avenue Bridge remain closed.

There will be a public meeting on the project from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Olympia Center, 222 Columbia St. NW. There also will be an online survey posted Wednesday through Nov. 30 at olympiawa.gov/westbaypark.

The city is preparing to create a master plan for an extended waterfront park. Any development would have to address environmental contamination caused by a former wood products industrial site on the land, said Laura Keehan, parks planning and design manager for the city.

Development could include shoreline restoration, removal of an old railroad trestle, and construction of a trail connecting West Bay Park to Heritage Park and Percival Landing on the other side of West Bay.

Keehan said the master plan, which is scheduled to be done by the end of 2018, is the first step in what could be a lengthy process. A previous attempt at a master plan for the area stalled.

“It could take several years to put together the funding, and then of course we have to do the detailed design, put it out to bid, and then construction would take some time,” she said.

Abby Spegman: 360-704-6869, @AbbySpegman

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