Redirect the money, keep trail as is
Editor’s Note: This letter was sent to King County in response to a request for input on the proposed Green to Cedar Rivers North Trail Segment Improvement:
Thank you for providing methods of communication to you regarding the proposed improvements to the Green to Cedar Rivers Trail North Segment. For the record, as residents of the Lake Wilderness area in Maple Valley, we use the trail almost daily and are very much opposed to the planned development and expenditures as stated in the supporting documents provided by King County. Here are some of our reasons: The improvements will include further removal of trees and plants, which we see occurring in so many places. One they are removed, they never come back, it is forever. The surface of the trail in this section is crushed gravel currently. Crushed gravel provides several positives: 1) water runoff from the gravel is not affected by chemicals which will be in existence with asphalt; 2) crushed gravel provides trail users sound notification of someone coming upon them from behind, asphalt will not; 3) bikes already travel much too fast on the crushed gravel and often times results in people hurrying to avoid them (we can attest to that personally and by what we have seen). Asphalt surface will allow bikes to travel MUCH faster than the crushed gravel and trail walkers will not hear the bikes coming up on them; 4) people travel the trail even at night and can hear others nearby as they walk on the crushed gravel. That will not be the case on asphalt and we believe you will be seeing muggings occur as a result of making it much more quiet and hard to hear someone approaching from behind.
I would ask you to address the annual cost of maintaining the trail in the current state compared to the cost of paving over yet another section of our earth. My guess is the paving project will cost a lot more and countless trees will once again fall victim to a project that really doesn’t need to happen.
I am certain our concerns will not stop this project. I am glad I had the opportunity to voice my concerns. I believe the monies set aside for this project could be better used elsewhere, but I am sure that this will go forward. It is sad to see the trees being taken one by one. Take a look at Four Corners in Maple Valley at the intersection of Kent Kangley and Maple Valley Highway — there was a beautiful forest there which was scraped clean to the soil level. Thousands of trees gone, forever, for new houses which will be 10 feet apart. Not ONE tree or plant was saved in this scorched earth approach.
My advice, redirect the monies to a better project and leave the trail as is.
Pete and Evelyn Donati