Special Reports

Park for bridge buffs open

A new Pierce County park designed to provide views of construction of the new Tacoma Narrows bridge will open with a public celebration from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today.

The 35-acre Narrows Park is on the Gig Harbor side of the Narrows, just south of the existing bridge. It was identified early in the new bridge project as an ideal spot for viewing the construction.

Over the past year, Pierce County, the state Transportation Department and the bridge builder, Tacoma Narrows Constructors, enhanced the park and christened it as the bridge's official viewing site.

Renovations include a newly paved access road and parking lot, a new handicapped-accessible sidewalk leading from the parking lot to a gazebo near the beach, new landscaping and two telescopic viewers that provide close-up views of bridge construction.

Today's celebration will begin with remarks by local elected officials, including Pierce County Executive John Ladenburg, Pierce County Councilman Terry Lee, Pierce County Parks and Recreation director Jan Wolcott and Gig Harbor Mayor Gretchen Wilbert.

Other planned activities include a historical exhibit by the Peninsula Historical Society, a display of tide pool "touch tanks" and music by Dan Minter & The Almost Handsome Guys, a jazz quartet of students from Peninsula and Gig Harbor high schools.

Rob Carson: 253-597-8693

rob.carson@mail.tribnet.com

If you go

No parking will be available at the new park today. Guests should park at the Tacoma Narrows Airport, 1202 26th St. N.W. and use a free shuttle service provided by Pierce County. Shuttles will run continually between the airport and park.

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