Trilliumunveils plans for Point Whitehorn

Published on Thu, Sep 28, 2006 by Jack Kintner

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Trillium unveils plans for Point Whitehorn

By Jack Kintner

The Trillium Corporation unveiled plans last Monday for Alden Reach, a major development project to be located on a thousand-plus acre waterfront tract south of Point Whitehorn and immediately west of the BP Cherry Point Refinery.

Trillium president and CEO David Syre said that as Trillium has done since their first project, the Snowater condominium development near Glacier, the first step they’re taking is to preserve some of the property.
In this case they’ve created a 51-acre beachfront and upland park through a land swap with the Whatcom Land Trust.

Officials from both Trillium and the land trust were on hand last Monday at a catered lunch in the middle of the Alden Reach property to announce the swap and the development plans.

The broad expanse of hayfields and woodlots that was once divided among several small county farms and homesteads has an unbroken panorama of almost 180 degrees from Point Roberts through the Gulf Islands and San Juans around to Lummi Island.

Rand Jack, who, like Syre, is a founding board member of the land trust, said that the trade involved 43 acres near the south end of Jackson Road in exchange for the waterfront parcel, which is mostly wooded and has two active raptor nests, one currently used by a pair of bald eagles.

“The trust will maintain a conservation easement on the property but the park will be operated by the county parks system,” said Jack.

The facility, including a parking lot, trails and access to 1,700 feet of cobble beach, should be open sometime in the fall of 2007.

In order to do the project, a mix of light industry and residential use, Trillium will be working to re-zone one of the last remaining pieces of open land that’s zoned for heavy industry in the county.

Trillium vice-president Wayne Schwandt explained that the demand for heavy industrial sites, once driven by the local availability of cheap power and labor, has disappeared in favor of environmentally diverse mixed use development.

“These days, the retiring baby boomers are choosing first where to live and then deciding what to do, something that’s supported by telecommuting technology among other things,” Schwandt said
He added that, “we start with a green infrastructure and then find compatible uses.”