County forms Coast Guard working group

08/31/2017

A working group comprised of 10 community representatives will meet for the first time in September to help navigate the county’s purchase of the Coast Guard housing complex in Point Reyes Station. 

The group’s first job, said Leelee Thomas, the planning manager for the county’s Housing and Federal Grants Division, is to provide some initial community outreach this fall. Down the road, it will provide feedback as the county drafts a request for proposals for a nonprofit group to either own or manage the property once the sale is final. 

Ultimately, the group will help evaluate the proposals themselves. 

“It’s difficult to project how long it will take for the sale to go through, but our real estate department and myself are in the midst of discussions with the Coast Guard. We’re in the appraisal process,” Ms. Thomas said. 

The county appointed representatives from the North Marin Water District, the Dance Palace Community Center, Shoreline Unified School District, West Marin Community Services, the West Marin Collaborative and other organizations, as well as from local businesses.

“We want the advice of the working group members, firstly, on how much community engagement is needed throughout this process,” she said. 

Shuttered last year, the Coast Guard housing complex located off First Street has been eyed by the Community Land Trust of West Marin as a prime site for affordable housing. The 30-acre property is comprised of around 36 townhomes, picnic areas, a tennis court, a pool and a path leading to West Marin School. 

“The repurposing of the property has been talked about for a long time, so we are really happy that it is moving forward from a conceptual discussion to actual implementation,” Drew McIntyre, North Marin Water District’s general manager who is part of the working group, said. The district has wells and a treatment facility located on the property and hopes to acquire a portion of land rather than continuing to rely on easements, once the property transitions to a new owner. 

Another voice in the new working group, Shoreline principal Matthew Nagle, said he is looking to advocate for West Marin families. “We’ve had a number of families leave our school because there’s nothing close to affordable housing out here,” he said. “This is an opportunity to be part of an effort to address that concern.”