OLYMPIA - Plans to restore the public boat launch at Point No Point - and possibly the resort area nearby - will be the focus of a public meeting June 18 hosted by the Hansville community and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).
The meeting will run 7 to 9 p.m. at the Hansville Community Center in Buck Lake Park on the northern end of the Kitsap Peninsula.
A key topic for discussion at the meeting is whether to restore the aging cabins, RV sites and other facilities at the 3.4-acre resort property near the boat launch, or make some other use of that property, said Sue Patnude, WDFW regional director.
"Based on the public comments we received last fall, we've decided on a general approach for restoring the boat launch," Patnude said. "Now we want to hear what people have to say about the idea of restoring the resort, too. Clearly it's a consideration in the overall design of the facility."
The current boat-launch facility, built in the 1920s, was closed in January 2002 due to safety concerns. Last October, after meeting with community members and other interested parties, WDFW decided on a plan to restore the existing rail-based launch system rather than pursue other options, Patnude said.
WDFW currently estimates the cost of renovating the boat launch at $1.3 million to $1.5 million, excluding any costs associated with restoring the resort. WDFW plans to seek federal and state grants to renovate the launch system, but funding to restore the resort would have to come from other sources, Patnude said.
"That's one of things we need to talk about," she said. "WDFW doesn't have the funding to renovate - much less operate - the resort, so we'll be open to ideas if people want to move in that direction."
WDFW purchased the boat launch and resort property at Point No Point in 1996 to provide anglers and recreational boaters access to Puget Sound. Patnude said the WDFW hopes to put the boat launch back in operation within three to five years, although the timing will depend largely on the department's success in securing the necessary funding.
"This is a major priority for WDFW, because a lot of people depend on that launch," Patnude said. "We encourage anyone with ideas about how to design the new facility to attend the upcoming meeting."