Saturday, April 07, 2007

Bill Point

This is a sketch of Bill Point, the sandy peninsula that juts out to protect the southern entrance of Eagle Harbor. For the past few months, we have been moored with this view of Bill Point, and I have admired the juxtaposition of the distant Seattle skyline with the nearby Bill Point industrial landscape.
For eighty years or more, Bill Point and its adjacent cove was the site of an industrial operation where timbers were treated with creosote, a preservative that was highly effective, but also turned out to be very toxic and persistent in the soil. For the past fifteen years, Bill Point has been an EPA Superfund cleanup site. The red line in the sketch is a high steel containment wall that surrounds the remaining contaminated soil on the point to keep the chemicals from leaching into the sea. This is just one of many extreme cleanup measures. The lovely curving beach between our marina and Bill Point has been entirely rebuilt; the sand that lies there was brought in from a river valley near Bellingham, replacing contaminated sand and soil that were removed. The shore and adjacent woodland have just been reopened as a park.
It’s been interesting to live with this vista, with the herons, eagles, ducks, and kingfishers that swarm over the bay, and the knowledge of the history of the land and seascape. Is the curvature of the shoreline, the perfect color touch of the iron retaining wall, or the exhilaration of the dogs and children on the sand more or less appealing because of what has gone before?

2 Comments:

Blogger Kate said...

I always felt the same way about the waterfront in Tacoma along Ruston Way. The old Asarco smelter used to be at the west end and it was great watching the transformation from all that industry into a green park.

April 09, 2007 6:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Indigo travel plans are truly inspiring.

When you get to Cabo, try to jump up to San Carlos on the mainland side of the Sea of Cortez. Great marina, good food and settings that have been used for several movies.

clw

April 11, 2007 5:59 PM  

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