Public Input Sought in Shoreline Master Program Update

“Four public meetings are scheduled in March from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. to hear citizens’ views and knowledge on eight requirements elements of the Shoreline Master Program.” So reads the Thurston County Long Range Planning page describing the Shoreline Master Plan Update process on which the County is now engaged. According to documents on the web site of the Thurston Regional Planning Council, “The goal of this Master Program is to preserve to the fullest possible extent the scenic, aesthetic and ecological qualities of the Shorelines of the Thurston Region in harmony with those uses which are deemed essential to the life and well-being of its citizens.”

Thurston County’s Shoreline Master Program was last updated in 1990, before new state guidelines were approved in 2003. Thurston County must update its plan by 2011 in order to be consistent with the latest state requirements.

One of four regional public meetings will be held right here at the Griffin Fire Station.
Wednesday, March 11
6 to 8 PM
Griffin Fire Hall
3707 Steamboat Loop Rd NW
Olympia, WA 98502

At regional workshops beginning March 4, 2009, Thurston County will turn to citizens for help in crafting policies for eight required elements for the Shoreline Master Program update.

  • An economic development element for the location and design of industries, industrial projects of statewide significance, transportation facilities, port facilities, tourist facilities, commerce, and other developments that are particularly dependent on their location on or use of shorelines of the state
  • A public access element making provision for public access to publicly owned areas
  • A recreational element for the preservation and enlargement of recreational opportunities, including, but not limited to, parks, tidelands, beaches, and recreational areas
  • A circulation element consisting of the general location and extent of existing and proposed major thoroughfares, transportation routes, terminals, and other public utilities and facilities, all correlated with the shoreline use element
  • A use element which considers the proposed general distribution and general location and extent of the use on shorelines and adjacent land areas for housing, business, industry, transportation, agriculture, natural resources, recreation, education, public buildings and grounds, and other categories of public and private uses of the land
  • A conservation element for the preservation of natural resources, including, but not limited to, scenic vistas, aesthetics, and vital estuarine areas for fisheries and wildlife protection
  • An historic, cultural, scientific, and educational element for the protection and restoration of buildings, sites, and areas having historic, cultural, scientific, or educational values
  • An element that gives consideration to the statewide interest in the prevention and minimization of flood damages

Planners also will ask citizens to help map out shoreline designations.

Shorelines and shoreline protection are integral to our way of life here in the Griffin area. I hope the area homeowners will take this opportunity to become involved in the effort to update the County’s Shoreline Master Plan.

Click here for the Thurston Regional Planning Council’s page, including downloadable pieces of the 1990 Shoreline Master Plan.

Click here for the County’s pages on the process for updating the Shoreline Master Plan.

UPDATED: Click here to see the brief article in the Olympian, regarding the efforts to update the Plan.


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