Last month, Ed Robison, chairman of Land and Improvements for the Key Peninsula Metropolitan Park District, announced a five-year agreement with Pierce County that will allow the park district to build and maintain trails through 55 of the 72 acres that now house the Pierce County Solid Waste Transfer Station off the Key Peninsula Highway.

The remaining 17 acres will be cordoned off for a buffer and for use by the transfer station.

According to a recent press release, Scott Gallacher, Key Pen Parks executive director, said the property is adjacent to the well-used 20-acre Volunteer Park.

Much of the transfer station site is a wetland. Commission Vice President Mark Michel, trails chairman for the district said, “We’ll use particular care in building trails.”

The public, through surveys and meetings, has stated its No. 1 priority for the district is trails, “so we’re being responsive to that,” said commission President Bill Trandum, who noted the agreement has been in the works for about four years. According to the document, Trandum thanked Steve Wamback, with the Pierce County Public Works and Utilities for his persistence in helping work out the agreement.

The park district will reimburse the county for about $4,500 in legal and administrative costs, and will pay the county $1,000 per year for use of the property. The five-year term of the agreement is renewable.

The deal affords a future opportunity for the public to access additional land on the Key Peninsula and natural preserves.

“We will be working on the trails over time and will also be looking for civic-minded individuals and groups support in the future,” Gallacher said.

He added the park district is in the process of developing trail plans that will need to be approved by the county. He hopes to start working on building trails in the fall.

For information, contact Bill Trandum at 253-405-1842 or btrandum@nullkeypenparks.com.

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