OLYMPIA – Options for restoring the boat-launch facility at Point No Point in northern Kitsap County will be discussed at a public meeting scheduled Oct. 24 by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).
The meeting will run from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Hansville Community Center in Buck Lake Park on the northern end of the Kitsap Peninsula. Public comments will be welcomed after a presentation on various proposals for the boat-launch facility.
"Since last spring, the department has been investigating three possible options for restoring the launch, including the cost of each approach," said Sue Patnude, WDFW regional director. "Before we go any further, we want to hear what local residents and the boating public think about these options and how to pay for them."
The current facility, built in the 1920s on land owned by WDFW at the old Point No Point Resort, has been closed since January due to safety concerns. Designed to launch and retrieve vessels with passengers onboard, the rail-based launch was built long before current safety codes were in place and is no longer structurally sound, Patnude said.
The three options under consideration by WDFW include:
- Replacing the rail launch with a concrete boat ramp at an estimated cost of $618,000.
- Restoring the current rail-launch facility at an estimated cost of $1.6 million.
- Replacing the rail launch with a "no rider" system at an estimated cost of $1.7 million.
Patnude said each of the three options has pros and cons, but that WDFW will be looking for partners to help finance the project regardless of which approach is ultimately adopted.
"I don't think it's any secret that state government is facing some tough budgetary times, and WDFW is no exception," Patnude said. "We're eager to get the launch back up and running, but it's becoming increasing clear that we're going to need some partners to help to finance the project."
Until its closure in January, the Point No Point facility was one of WDFW's most popular launch sites, used by hundreds of anglers and recreational boaters every year. Patnude said the department hopes to begin construction on a new launch facility within the next few years, although financing issues could affect timing of the project.
"Our primary challenges are to identify the preferred option and determine how to pay for it," Patnude said. "We want to encourage anyone with ideas about those issues to attend the public meeting."