Concerns about port master plan | Letters

The Port of Orcas presented DOWL’s alternative options for their Master Plan choices and requested comment. The vast majority of citizen comments favored “No Build/No Growth” with minor improvements, for a variety of good reasons stated (partially available at Hundreds of islanders signed a petition favoring the same.

This week many of us attended the “big reveal” Port/DOWL events, viewed the plan, listened to presentations and asked questions.

To date, our “No Build/No Growth” input has been ignored. The currently proposed plan and expansion is at odds also with the county’s vision statement and the EPRC vision statement. This “follow the consultants” approach (with a $600,000 price tag!) has produced a draft plan wildly out of sync with islanders’ self-determination.

Some concerns:

• The port’s demonstrated limited ability to deal properly with wetland issues.

• Allowing B2 commercial planes to dictate Port needs.

• Mt. Baker Road relocation.

• Increased noise, traffic and congestion.

Lack of mitigation/noise abatement plans;

• Negative impact on the vital Brandt’s Landing Marina.

• Developing the former dog park corner into a mini-industrial park with new hangars, parking, a helipad, taxiways and relocated terminal.

• A commercial park at the end of the already-beleaguered Seaview neighborhood.

• Requiring privately held property to the west and east, seriously affecting neighborhood property rights and values.

• Lack of economic and other impact studies.

Any and all further public comments are due by Oct. 4. Please speak up now to your elected commissioners and

Susan Malins

Orcas Island