Local Parks grants help protect these symbols of vibrant communities, providing places for families to gather and play and promoting a healthy and active lifestyle in an era when people spend increasing amounts of their time inside. The WWRP is the largest source of local parks funding in Washington, helping communities fund the acquisition, development, and renovation of vital recreation areas and green spaces.
This proposal is to acquire a neighborhood park in one of the older Bellingham neighborhoods. The Sunnyland neighborhood is centrally located in Bellingham, but lies on the edge of an industrial area. The neighborhood is rebounding from years of decline as young families move into the area, seeking affordable, conveniently located housing. In 1996, during the update of their neighborhood plan, Sunnyland residents expressed a need for a park in the core of their neighborhood – the closest existing parks are located on the other side of busy arterial streets. The identified project site as the last pleasant open site available for a park in the neighborhood. In 1999, neighborhood residents applied for and received a Community Development Block Grant Neighborhood Initiative Program Grant so that the City of Bellingham could purchase the site. The site was acquired in May 2000 under a waiver of retroactivity. This acquisition will provide a much needed park and stimulate other improvements in an otherwise unserved neighborhood. The City has committed funds to augment the acquisition reimbursement and the park can be developed in 2002.