Camas’ newest city park begins to take shape in Green Mountain subdivision

Camas City Council to hold public hearing on Green Mountain Park on Aug. 7

This illustration shows the proposal for Camas' newest public park, the Green Mountain Park, which the Camas City Council plans to discuss on Monday, Aug. 7. (Contributed illustration/Courtesy of city of Camas)

(Graphic by Tori Benavente/Post-Record)

If approved as-is by the Camas City Council later this summer, the city’s latest public park would offer residents a new space to play with their children on the play structure, picnic with their families at ADA-accessible picnic tables and barbecue pits, play a game of volleyball or basketball or simply walk on the trails and take in the gorgeous views.

Known as Green Mountain Park, the city’s newest recreational area is located on the northwest edge of Camas’ urban growth boundary inside the planned Green Mountain subdivision, and is a hybrid of public and private development: The park will be city-owned and open to the public, but is funded at an estimated cost of nearly $3 million by the Green Mountain subdivision developers through credited park-impact fees. To sweeten the deal, the developers have agreed to provide and fund the park’s maintenance operations for 10 years. The city will provide water for the park’s irrigation system, restrooms and drinking fountain.

City leaders will hold a public hearing on the proposed Green Mountain Park at the Camas City Council’s first meeting in August, on Monday, Aug. 7.

Green Mountain developers said last week that they hope to start work on the park this summer.

The 14-acre public park, which will include 5 acres of recreational space, will be sited within the planned Green Mountain development, a 289-acre area north of Lacamas Lake that includes plans for 1,300 single- and multi-family residential units and nearly 9 acres of commercial, retail and office space.

City leaders approved the development in 2015 and included plans for public open spaces and a city-owned park.

“Since the approval of the subdivision, the applicant went back to work and looked at what types of features (to include in the new park),” Phil Bourquin, the city’s community development director, told council members at a June 19 council workshop.

Afterward, Bourquin said, the developers approached the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission to make sure their proposals were in keeping with the city’s vision.

“The Parks Board seemed to be in full support of the agreement,” Bourquin said.

Meetings from the Jan. 25, 2017 Parks and Recreation Commission meeting show that some members hoped to see amenities that did not show up on the version of the park coming before the city council in August: Sean Vergillo, a Parks & Rec commissioner, suggested placing fitness stations, a bouldering wall and lights inside the new Green Mountain Park, while other Parks & Rec commissioners discussed putting an amphitheater, bocce ball area and pickleball courts inside Camas’ newest public park.

In the end, the developers’ park proposal didn’t incorporate any of those suggestions, but does include volleyball and basketball courts, a children’s play structure, ADA accessible picnic tables, barbecue pits, restrooms, more than 100 new trees, several acres of green space and nearly 35,000 square feet of sidewalks and trails.

“We have always said we’re more than happy to put more than a basic park out there,” Randy Printz, an attorney with Vancouver-based Landerholm Law Firm who represents the Green Mountain developers, told Camas City Council members on June 19. “We’re trying to create a really nice park and it’s not just for Green Mountain (residents), it is a public park.”

The developers have told city leaders in past meetings that they hope to have the park’s first phase of construction — the most expensive portion of the park that would site the play area, picnic shelter and picnic tables, volleyball court, 22,000 square feet of sidewalks and trail, two barbecue pits, 66 trees and more than 200,000 square feet of lawn inside a 3.85-acre portion of the park — completed by the end of this summer.

For more information about the proposed Green Mountain Park, visit the city’s website at www.ci.camas.wa.us, click on the “Minutes, Agendas & Videos” link under the “Your Government” tab and then click on the “Meeting Details” for the June 19, 2017 City Council Workshop and, finally, on the link to the left of the “Green Mountain Park Development Agreement” item on the council’s agenda.