Heritage Park Clay Esquivel Skater.JPG

Clay Esquivel practices skateboarding in April 2018 at Heritage Park in Stanwood.

The Washington State Recreation and Conservation Funding Board has awarded a $350,000 grant to Stanwood for use in renovating the northwest baseball-softball field in the Heritage Park Recreation Complex.

Stanwood will contribute $496,700 to the park project, according to RCO’s online Project Snapshot. The park project will enlarge the field to allow for both child and adult play and convert the infield to synthetic turf to allow use by people with disabilities. Plans also include restoring the outfield with new seeding and renovating the drainage system.

Only nine baseball-softball fields are in this service area, and most suffer from poor drainage. Fields for games are a priority, which limits use for practice time, according to the Snapshot. In addition, people with special needs often must play in Everett because the existing fields are not compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

This grant is from the Youth Athletic Facilities program. Visit RCO’s online Project Snapshot at rco.wa.gov for more information and photographs of the project.

Snohomish, Island and Skagit counties were among the July 2 recipients of more than $126 million in grants to 333 projects in 37 of the state’s 39 counties that build and maintain outdoor recreation facilities and conserve wildlife habitat and working farms and forests.

“The funding creates more places to play, expands habitat for fish and other wildlife, supports clean air and water, and upholds healthy communities across Washington state and improves our quality of life,” said Kaleen Cottingham, director at the Recreation and Conservation Office, which administers the grants.

The grants to cities, counties, state and federal agencies, tribal governments, and nonprofit organizations were awarded through seven different grant programs. Revenue comes from a mix of federal grants, the sale of state bonds, gas taxes and user fees.

All of the projects were evaluated by citizen committees and ranked through a competitive process for the Recreation and Conservation Funding Board to consider for funding. The board invests public funds in parks, trails, beaches, boating facilities, wildlife habitat and natural areas to improve the state’s quality of life.

“Because we have funding for only about half of the applications that come in, we have to be strategic with our investments, selecting only the best projects,” Cottingham said.

The office accepted applications for 562 projects, requesting nearly $232 million. Most of the grant programs require grant applicants to contribute matching resources. This year, the matching resources totaled nearly $142 million, more than doubling the state’s investment in outdoor recreation and conservation efforts.

Of the more than $126 million in grants, more than $47 million goes to build or improve parks, more than $16 million goes each to improve facilities for boaters, $20 million to maintain trails, more than $5 million goes to conserve working farms and another $36 million goes to protect important wildlife habitat.

See rco.wa.gov for descriptions of all the grants.

Load comments