North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Improvements planned at Wenberg County Park

 

Christopher Andersson

A boat sets off at the current boat launch at Wenberg County Park on March 1. The launch is set to be closed after May 1 as a replacement is constructed throughout the summer.

Wenberg County Park at Lake Goodwin will be receiving many improvements this summer, including to its accessibility for people with disabilities and its boat launch.

County officials broke ground for the construction on March 1.

The 45-acre park includes a 70-site campground, two picnic shelters, a large freshwater shoreline for Lake Goodwin and a boat launch area.

The park used to be a state park but was transferred to Snohomish County in 2009.

The new boat launch will be a single-lane 40-foot wide launch, according to Kevin Teague, senior park planner for the county.

Teague said it will be similar to the launch at Willard Wyatt Park in Lake Stevens.

"This will work much more easily and quickly so people will be able to get in and out faster," he said.

The improved boat launch is not expected to put more boats out on the water.

"There was some concern from citizens that we would create this great boat launch and it was going to make this lake crowded, but we're really not doing that," said Teague.

To increase capacity for the park they would have had to add more parking spots.

"We're not adding capacity to the park," said Teague. "There can't be more boats on the lake then there have been, that's driven by parking."

The park's boat launch is expected to closed from May 1 to the end of September as it undergoes construction.

"The reason is that we had to wait until then for the 'fish window' which is the time of year that it is less impactful for the fish in Lake Goodwin," said Teague.

There will also be a fixed dock system instead of the current logs in place now.

"Having grown up in the region and spent time on this lake, having the fixed dock system is going to be huge," said Tom Teigen, director of Snohomish County Parks and Recreation.

"We've all played on these logs before and gotten injured on the logs at one time or another, but we're going to build a system that will be more functional and will probably last 40 to 50 years," he said.

Providing better access to the shoreline for those with disabilities was also a big priority for the project.

"One of the main drivers was accessibility," said Teague. "There isn't good handicap access to the water at all."

The new park will be ADA compliant, said Teigen.

"From our perspective, ADA access and getting full accessibility is critical for us because we want all of our citizens to feel welcome in our parks," he said.

Former County Council member and Arlington local Ken Klein, who currently works in the County Executive's office, said it's good more people will get to enjoy the park.

"I've lived in this area a long, long time and this is a park I always came to, so it's exciting that its going to be more accessible to everyone, regardless of their abilities," he said.

"It's very exciting that we get a great opportunity for everyone in this county to come and play," he said.

Teague said there will be more parking for those with disabilities, as well as full access down to the dock and into the water.

In addition, construction crews are currently working on the pathways in the north part of the park and redoing them completely.

The previous paths suffered from root damage, said Teague, and the new ones will be fully accessible to those with disabilities.

Christopher Andersson

County officials and staff break ground on a Lake Goodwin beach at Wenberg County Park on March 1. From left: Snohomish County Parks and Recreation director Tom Teigen, Ken Klein from the Snohomish County Executive's office, Snohomish County Council member Nate Nehring, division manager Russ Bosanko, senior park planner Kevin Teague and parks property administrator Kye Iris.

A final project in the construction will be a system that captures and treats stormwater that goes into Lake Goodwin.

"Right now we're not treating the stormwater, so it's just running into the lake," said Teague.

"When it's not treated you're carrying pollutants and that sort of thing into the lake and that's harmful to the fish and to the quality of the water," he said.

Construction crews began preparing for the projects in the week of Feb. 26 and will work on the parts of the construction that are out of the water in the coming months.

Beginning in May they will work on the parts of the construction that are in the water, said Teague.

Teague expects work to be done by the end of September.

County officials are excited for the improved Wenberg County Park.

"I think they're going to attract a lot of people from all over the place, so it's an economic driver for the county," said Klein.

"We get over 5 million visitors to our county parks so we know this lake draws people from all over," said Teigen.

 

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