I was personally disappointed with the city’s decision to deny Whatcom Events’ request to route a portion of the Ski to Sea mountain bike leg through Fairhaven Park’s forested area (also known as the 100 Acre Wood, Fairhaven Highlands and Chuckanut Forest). The land was acquired at great expense to the city, and is designated city park land. I believe the planned trail route was an appropriate use of the park and would have showcased one of the significant values of the property to both city residents and visitors. It is unfortunate that a small number of vocal citizens stopped what would have been a great opportunity for many more, well within the authority of the city to grant and intent of the park in general. Having personally walked and evaluated the route several times prior to the event, it was clear to me that the race’s impact on park conditions would have been minimal, and in fact could easily have been a net improvement to park trails sustainability and access as a result of both pre- and post-race preparation. In my opinion the poorly-informed and emotional objections of a few prevented a greater benefit to the general citizenry of Bellingham and the park lands themselves.
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