The biking trail in Swan Creek Park (TNT, 5-3) is off to a great start, but future trails and other improvements to the park hang in the balance of budget negotiations in the state Legislature.
Metro Parks Tacoma has applied for a Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program grant that would increase park access, expand existing trail networks, provide amenities that would attract new visitors and expand the community garden program. We thank Gov. Jay Inslee for recommending $75 million for the WWRP grant program, funding Swan Creek Park. Unfortunately, the House and Senate budgets fall short of this level.
This program is a true investment in our communities. Providing access to parks helps reduce childhood obesity, raises property values, fosters connections to the outdoors, improves our quality of life overall and promotes community safety. Busy parks create a sense of well-being and security, discouraging criminal activity.
Investing in our public spaces simply makes sense. Community support for Swan Creek Park bike trails has been strong, and I hope some of that energy will help support this important WWRP grant.
(Glover is executive director of the Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance, which has contracted with Metro Parks to design and build the Swan Creek Park mountain bike trails.)