During our August board meeting, a resolution was made to push an aggressive start to Phase I development of Gateway Park. The motion failed by a 3-2 vote. While I can’t speak for the others in the majority, I can explain why I voted no.

If we were to start excavation in 2016, chances are very good we’d be compelled to stop work, spend money on erosion control throughout the Pierce County wet weather building moratorium, only to spend more to dig it out and return to work. Our consultants estimated unproductive costs associated with starting this fall could exceed $35,000.

The resolution was brought forward in hopes of “showing progress to the public.” The consultants concluded pushing the project would lead to a best-case completion date approximately two months earlier. I believe it would have been irresponsible to risk Key Pen Parks’ money and staff time for the perception of progress.

Commissioner Kelly incorrectly said in his letter, “The vast majority of our park property is under lock and key.” I count 11 properties available to the public. The only property currently closed is the future Gateway Park.

I applaud and respect Commissioner Kelly’s passion for progress. I look forward to clearing up any misconceptions he may have about our last board meeting.

I hope to see you at the next board meeting, or on one of our incredible trails soon.

Mark Michel

Key Pen Parks Board President

Key Pen Parks Commissioner Says Build Now
Student for School Funding