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Outdoor trail, dog park could be coming to Capital Mall next year

Officials at Capital Mall have proposed building an outdoor walking trail and dog park around the mall’s perimeter as early as next year.
Officials at Capital Mall have proposed building an outdoor walking trail and dog park around the mall’s perimeter as early as next year. sbloom@theolympian

Looking for some outdoor exercise? A place to take the dog? Ever think to try the mall?

Officials at Capital Mall want to build an outdoor walking trail along the mall’s perimeter as early as next year. Plans submitted to the city recently include exercise stations, sitting areas and a fenced dog park near the mall entrance on Black Lake Boulevard Southwest.

The trail was designed with mall walkers in mind. Capital Mall has more than 100 registered walkers who are allowed in before stores open to walk the empty concourse.

“They enjoy the inside when it’s raining, but there’s not anywhere to go when the sun is shining,” said Kevin Johnston, the mall’s general manager.

He said other people bring their dogs to the mall but only service animals are allowed inside.

This idea has been floated for years but gained momentum recently after West Olympia Business Association leaders offered their support. Project officials will meet with city staff next week to go over the design and permitting.

Johnston said the design could change based on feedback from the city. He said the mall’s owner and operator, Starwood Retail Partners, would pay for half the cost, but the rest would have to come from sponsors and donors.

Abby Spegman: 360-704-6869

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