Letter to the editor: Point Edwards responds to Save Our Marsh concerns

Editor:

We want to thank Save our Marsh for sharing their thoughts with Point Edwards (see the Feb. 24 letter here) and to thank the Edmonds community as well for their questions and comments. Point Edwards Homeowners Association and Landscape Team, in conjunction with Certified Arboricultural and Biological Experts, have submitted an application for a Type III-A Landscape Modification Permit to be able to work on a small portion of the PE complex. The project does not propose any new development, will not change the slope or stormwater movement, and will not create any impervious surfaces. Instead, the entire goal is to positively influence the landscape by responsible tree work, and then careful replanting.

This project balances current zoning, the City of Edmonds Comprehensive Plan, the COE Urban Forest Management Plan, as well as the wildlife goals of adjoining properties with the goals of the owners making up the HOA. Our application has been uploaded and can be found on the City of Edmonds website. Though the public comment period has closed, comments will still be considered if sent to Landscape Manager Bel Johnson, if received by March 20, 2021.

The following statement was already shared with COE City Council and Development Department Staff, with Point Edwards residents, and was sent to Marjorie Fields, as lead contact for Save Our Marsh. Because we cannot be sure if everyone interested has seen our response, and to reach a broader audience, we want to share the following:

To: Marjorie Fields on behalf of Save Our Marsh,

Point Edwards would like to thank you for your comments during the open comment period regarding Point Edwards Permit application PLN2020-0054.  We have submitted the Permit to modify a small area located on our north slope and also a required Landscape Management Plan for both West and North slopes.  We have taken the open public comments received by you as an opportunity to further consult with experts regarding the subjects you have addressed.  The experts we are working with have considerable experience in wildlife habitat management and wildlife habitat conservation including endangered avian species.  Also, we have worked with a very qualified Arborist throughout the development of this plan. We will incorporate, amend, and supplement our Permit and SEPA Studies with their guidance and attention to the sensitivity regarding slope integrity and wildlife habitat. We have worked diligently to develop a plan that fosters diversity in plant life so that food and forage for the birds and other wildlife will be enhanced.  The wildlife inhabiting our slopes is such an important part of living at Point Edwards and we believe a key reason why Edmonds residents visit.

There was an established revegetation plan that was put in place in 2004 for the developer to complete. The revegetation plan reintroduced evergreen trees and native northwest plants that now grow healthy and vibrant on the west slope. It was in 2009 that Point Edwards HOA took over the care of the west and north slope. We own these critical slopes and take our responsibility for them very seriously.  We are the stewards of our critical slopes and are passionately interested in the best health of the slope and the health of the wildlife. We are so fortunate to share our slopes with the Edmonds community.  It is with great care and compassion that we covet our role. PE wants to be able to maintain and improve the landscape on PE property and is doing so in accordance with guidance from the COE and with consideration toward long term slope integrity and wildlife habitat.

The City of Edmonds is a very special place and Point Edwards and the Edmonds community enjoy the marsh, ferry views, mountain views, eagles that soar, and the wildlife that enjoy the critical slopes in so many areas throughout Edmonds but uniquely at Point Edwards and the Marsh. It is our belief and our hope that putting forth the most successful landscape plan, with the greatest impactful results, is imperative and will define our slopes into perpetuity.

Yours truly,

Bel’ Johnson
Landscape Manager
Point Edwards HOA

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Thank you Bel’ for your detailed and thoughtful letter to the editor and to others in our community like Grace Gonzalez who wrote a colorful description of the PE landscape and to Robyn Daly who reminded us of the massive oil tanks and years of soil remediation done to rid the area of toxic substances. Other comments repeated the stories told to me, many times since moving to PE in 2009, about the destructive actions made by the property developer years ago. To me those comments do not point us to the future. My interest and hope is to see the marsh extended to the base of the hillside and to view, as time marches on, healthy vibrant native species of all varieties inhabit the marsh. I realize we have a way to go on that idea.

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