Creek repair to cost city $400,000 more
The Seattle City Council will set aside $400,000 to settle a yearlong dispute over environmental damage wrought on a beloved creek during...
Seattle Times staff reporter
The Seattle City Council will set aside $400,000 to settle a yearlong dispute over environmental damage wrought on a beloved creek during the construction of a new firefighter-training center in the city's South Park neighborhood.
The money, appropriated Monday, will add to $4 million the city already committed to repair damage done to Hamm Creek after it was cited by the Army Corps of Engineers for illegally filling a one-acre wetland during the construction of the training center.
Community and environmental groups had complained the city plan for the $4 million would actually cause further harm to wetlands upstream. The Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition demanded that the city commit to repairing the upstream wetlands, but the city declined.
Councilmember Richard Conlin said the latest $400,000 appropriation comes after a year of disagreement between the environmental groups and the city.
"We had a hard time getting past the point where there didn't need to be a conflict," Conlin said.
It is yet unclear how the $400,000 will be spent, but the city has agreed to work with environmental and community groups on at least one cleanup project at the training-facility site.
B.J. Cummings, coordinator of the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition, said about $50,000 would be spent to assess options before that project is selected.
"The basic lesson here is that the past year of argument could have been avoided if folks in the communities are consulted when decisions are being made," Cummings said.
Jonathan Martin: 206-464-2605 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Copyright © 2007 The Seattle Times Company
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