Cougar Mountain, Duthie Hill parks projects proceed

June 23, 2011

NEW — 8 a.m. June 23, 2011

Improvements to King County and state recreation lands near Issaquah inched ahead Wednesday, as conservation officials outlined plans to spend $42 million for projects statewide.

The plan from the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office includes funding for projects on Cougar and Tiger mountains, in Duthie Hill Park and along the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

State legislators approved funding for the projects in a last-minute push as a special session ended in late May. The agencies proposing the projects promised matching funds to complete construction.

The state Recreation and Conservation Office presented a complete list of projects at a hearing in Olympia on Wednesday.

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Legislators preserve dollars for trail projects

May 31, 2011

Plans to acquire land for a Cougar Mountain trail and upgrade trail bridges in the Tiger Mountain State Forest received a last-minute boost from state lawmakers before a special legislative session ended late May 25.

Before sending the $32 billion state budget to Gov. Chris Gregoire, legislators allocated $42 million to the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program. The slice for the Issaquah area amounts to more than $1.5 million.

In addition to the Issaquah Alps projects, lawmakers directed funds to Duthie Hill Park and the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

The proposed budget recommends $500,000 for King County to acquire land for Precipice Trail near Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park and $247,870 to upgrade Tiger Mountain trail bridges. In addition, the proposal recommends $500,000 for the East Lake Sammamish Trail project and $317,477 for Duthie Hill Park.

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Legislators preserve dollars for Issaquah outdoor recreation projects

May 26, 2011

NEW — 10:30 a.m. May 26, 2011

Plans to acquire land for a Cougar Mountain trail and upgrade trail bridges in Tiger Mountain State Forest received a last-minute boost from state lawmakers before a special legislative session ended Wednesday night.

Before sending the $32 billion budget to Gov. Chris Gregoire, legislators allocated $42 million to the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program for more than 50 projects statewide. In addition to the Issaquah Alps projects, lawmakers directed funds to Duthie Hill Park and the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

The proposed budget recommends $500,000 for King County to acquire land for Precipice Trail near Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park and $247,870 to upgrade Tiger Mountain trail bridges. In addition, the proposal recommends $500,000 for the county’s East Lake Sammamish Trail project and $317,477 for county-run Duthie Hill Park.

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County seeks proposals for youth sports facilities

April 26, 2011

Youth sports organizations can apply for King County grants to build or upgrade recreation facilities.

The county Parks and Recreation Division is accepting applications from qualified groups for Youth Sports Facilities Grants. Applicants must partner with a public agency, such as a school district or municipal parks department, to develop or renovate sports facilities.

The fund has helped organizers build or renovate hundreds of public sports amenities in neighborhoods throughout the county.

Past grant recipients in the Issaquah area include city-run Central Park in the Issaquah Highlands and county-run Duthie Hill Park in Sammamish.

“Thanks to robust partnerships with community groups, we are using our limited resources to bring new or improved recreational amenities for King County residents that otherwise wouldn’t be possible,” County Executive Dow Constantine said in a release.

The program provides matching grant funds of up to $75,000. Grant requests range from $5,000 to $75,000.

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State Senate recommends leaner budget for trails

April 19, 2011

The state Senate proposed a less-generous budget last week for Issaquah-area outdoor recreation projects than the state House of Representatives.

Senators released a budget proposal April 12, a week after legislators from the other chamber recommended $2.18 million to upgrade trails and recreation areas.

Senators proposed reductions of more than $600,000 for local projects, trimming a Cougar Mountain trail project to $127,000 from the $500,000 recommended by the House and reducing Duthie Hill Park trailhead development to $55,000 from the $317,000 recommended by the House.

Lawmakers from both chambers agreed on Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program funding for the other Issaquah-area projects.

Senators also recommended $247,870 to build bridges on Tiger Mountain State Forest trails, plus $500,000 to pave East Lake Sammamish Trail from Redmond to Issaquah.

Both proposals include dollars for Covington and Snoqualmie Valley projects.

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State Senate recommends leaner budget for Issaquah trails

April 14, 2011

NEW — 4 p.m. April 14, 2011

The state Senate proposed a less-generous budget for Issaquah-area outdoor recreation projects than the state House of Representatives.

Senators released a budget proposal Tuesday night, a week after legislators from the other chamber recommended $2.18 million to upgrade trails and recreation areas.

Senators proposed reductions of more than $600,000 for local projects, trimming a Cougar Mountain trail project to $127,000 from the $500,000 recommended by the House and reducing Duthie Hill Park trailhead development to $55,000 from the $317,000 recommended by the House.

Lawmakers from both chambers agreed on Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program funding for the other Issaquah-area projects.

Senators also recommended $247,870 to build bridges on Tiger Mountain State Forest trails, plus $500,000 to pave East Lake Sammamish Trail from Redmond to Issaquah.

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State budget proposal outlines upgrades for Issaquah trails

April 12, 2011

Outdoor recreation and wildlife-protection projects in the Issaquah area received a boost in the proposed budget from the state House of Representatives, but hurdles remain before crews can break ground.

The proposed House budget includes a $500,000 Cougar Mountain Park-Precipice Trail grant, for King County to expand Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, create a buffer and create a gateway from Issaquah to the park. (King County acquired additional land for the park late last year.)

Funds from the $500,000 East Lake Sammamish Trail grant could help King County expand and pave the trail along the lake from Redmond to Issaquah.

The proposal includes a $317,000 Duthie Hill Park trailhead development grant to enable the county to expand the trailhead at the popular mountain-biking destination.

Bridges along Tiger Mountain State Forest trails could also be replaced using the $247,870 proposed for trail upgrades in the forest.

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State proposal outlines upgrades for Issaquah trails

April 7, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. April 7, 2011

Outdoor recreation and wildlife-protection projects in the Issaquah area received a boost in the proposed budget from the state House of Representatives.

The proposed budget includes a $500,000 Cougar Mountain Park-Precipice Trail grant, for King County to expand Cougar Mountain Park and to create a buffer to prevent pending development and create a gateway from Issaquah to the park.

(King County acquired additional land for the park late last year.)

Funds from the $500,000 East Lake Sammamish Trail grant could help King County expand and pave the trail along the lake from Redmond to Issaquah.

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County seeks proposals for youth sports facilities

March 20, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. March 20, 2011

Youth sports organizations can apply for King County grants to build or upgrade recreation facilities.

The county Parks and Recreation Division is accepting applications from qualified groups for Youth Sports Facilities Grants. Applicants must partner with a public agency, such as a school district or municipal parks department, to develop or renovate sports facilities.

The fund has helped organizers build or renovate hundreds of public sports amenities in neighborhoods throughout the county.

Past grant recipients in the Issaquah area include city-run Central Park in the Issaquah Highlands and county-run Duthie Hill Park in Sammamish.

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Off the Press

March 1, 2011

Issaquah attractions are worthy of bucket list

I’ve worked here at The Issaquah Press for over a decade now, covering different aspects of one of the state’s fastest growing towns.

David Hayes Press Reporter

I’ve patrolled the schools beat, sat in on City Council meetings when the city reporter was out of town, and roamed the sidelines at sporting events when Bob Taylor, our sports editor, couldn’t be everywhere at once.

Seeing so many sides of Issaquah, it has really grown on me over the years. How could it not, with so much to do and see, and with such interesting people waiting to tell their tale?

And that’s the problem. As I move further into my second decade covering Issaquah, I’ve realized there is still so much I haven’t done.

As “bucket lists” — where you make up a list of things to do before you die — have become all the rage, consider this my list of righting all the missed opportunities I’ve incurred since living and working in Issaquah.

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