LETTER | Preserve the Gift of Nature

Watershed Park

Watershed Park

Editor,

The Cross Kirkland Corridor is a 5.75-mile ribbon of nature that strings together seven of our important city parks (Watershed Park, Carillon Woods, Terrace Park, Cotton Hill Park, Crestwoods Park, Forbes Creek Park and Totem Lake Park). It borders ecologically vital secondary wetlands and environmentally sensitive areas, and crosses five natural drainage basins (South Juanita Slope, Kirkland Slope, Houghton Slope A, Carillon Creek, and Houghton Slope B), where run off streams directly into Lake Washington. It also serves as a riparian and wildlife corridor for our resident wildlife such as deer, coyotes and owls that are doing their best to survive in an increasingly dense city environment.

 

Cross Kirkland Trail staircase leading to Crestwoods Park. Built by community volunteers.

Cross Kirkland Trail staircase leading to Crestwoods Park. Built by community volunteers.

The Cross Kirkland Corridor serves as a “front porch” to our community. It draws our citizens out of their homes and out into nature where it provides a safe, quiet place for people to walk, bike, exercise, commute, experience nature, and get to know each other. Use of the trail naturally fosters relationships among neighbors, which, in turn, builds a stronger, connected community.


The City of Kirkland takes great pride in its natural resources, often citing our miles of shoreline, exceptional park and natural areas within easy reach of each resident, and our many recreation opportunities. Developing the Cross Kirkland Corridor into a transit corridor is antithesis to the city's stated mission and goals of "preserving the City's existing charm and natural amenities" and "protection of the natural environment for current residents and future generations." Changing the corridor from a natural trail will damage environmentally sensitive areas, bisect our community creating separation between our neighborhoods, and bring pollution into our lake and noise into our backyards. The City Council needs to listen to its citizens and step back from supporting transit options on the CKC so we can preserve the special gift of nature running through the heart of our city.


Sincerely,


Kelli Curtis