Story Walk: Come walk the new Westpark with me

Saturday's Walk; hope you can join us!
Saturday’s Walk will start at 1 p.m.; meet at Bay Vista Commons, 191 Russell Road.

One of my first times in Westpark was riding shotgun in a patrol car, trolling for suspects with warrants for their arrestThe officer I was with would simply ask for identification to run a background check. On more than a few occasions, warrants would turn up.

“Just want to make sure you’re not an ax murderer or anything,” the officer jokingly told one resident after checking his ID.

A lot has changed in 82-acre Westpark, now known as Bay Vista. Put simply: It’s not the crime haven it used to be. It took $80 million in state and federal funds to transform the place into a mixed-use development the Bremerton Housing Authority hopes will soon be filled with private investment as well. There’s already a nonprofit senior living facility and WinCo Foods. But there’s still a lot of green space to fill in.

The old Westpark sign remains in The Summit.
The old Westpark sign remains in The Summit.

On Saturday, come see it for yourself. With the help of Kurt Wiest, Bremerton Housing Authority’s executive director, we’ll walk roughly a mile or so of the development, exploring its new buildings and talking about how Wiest — a planner and housing authority veteran who came to the job primarily for redeveloping Westpark — chose to proceed on each project.

As it is the housing authority’s 75th year, we’ll also talk about the development’s past as Navy housing, its present and its future.

We hope you’ll join us for this Story Walk.

Here’s the details:

When: 1 p.m. Saturday May 23

Where: Meet at Bay Vista Commons, 191 Russell Road.

Cost: It’s free. But come ready to learn, be ready to walk and wear sturdy shoes.

For links to our previous Story Walks:

The new Lower Wheaton Way

Washington Avenue, past and present

The meandering Madrona Forest

Redwood Rendezvous in West Bremerton

Fourth Street’s Economic Divide

 

One thought on “Story Walk: Come walk the new Westpark with me

  1. Looks like a good place to stay out of as the police can demand your identification without recourse or probable cause. Don’t get me wrong, I support our officers but giving up basic freedoms is problematic.

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