The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle District, is seeking public input for updating the Lake Washington Ship Canal Master Plan. The plan includes land management of Corps properties at the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (Ballard Locks) and along the Lake Washington Ship Canal.

During the scoping period for master plan’s environmental assessment — June 1 through July 31 — the public is encouraged to submit ideas and comments regarding management of natural and recreational resources that should be included in the master plan. Comments may be submitted via email at:  LWSC.masterplan@usace.army.mil.

For more information, the public is encouraged to review the information available on the LWSC Master Plan webpage, https://www.nws.usace.army.mil/Home/Master-Plans/LWSC-Master-Plan.

The focus of the LWSC Master Plan revision is tied to the Natural Resources Management Program of the Corps of Engineers. The public is invited to comment on the Recreation, Cultural/Historic Resources and Natural Resources Management programs at Lake Washington Ship Canal.

This plan will not encompass the navigation mission at the LWSC.

Topics in the master plan include:

Carl S. English Botanical Garden

Visitor Center

Fish Ladder viewing Area

Recreation Management

Cultural/Historic Properties Management

Public tours

Public Use

Partners

Commuters

Special events

Special use permits

Facilities

The current Master Plan was approved approximately 20 years ago and must be brought up-to-date. While the overall purpose and running of the locks and its land has not changed, the Master Plan is a tool for the responsible stewardship of the natural and cultural resources within the area of responsibility of the LWSC.

Over the past couple of decades, there have been natural changes to the existing project conditions, the zone of influence, and new special issues and specific concerns identified, according to the Corps of Engineers announcement. 

The purpose of the Master Plan revision is to reflect the current project conditions and provide the projected future conditions of the project.

“We are looking for public input applicable to land use and outdoor recreation,” LWSC Master Plan project manager Katherine Cousins said in a Corps of Engineers press release. “The public’s comments are required and very valuable in drafting the updated plan.”

The Master Plan is scheduled for completion in September 2021.