Work began on the Tribal Hall Trails project in west Coos Bay when the contractor, Laskey-Clifton, mobilized earth-working equipment and began the clearing and grubbing of the new Shinny Field adjacent to the garden area Belex Tlxanii, just off Wallace Avenue . The overall project consists of several major improvements including a new access road into the Cultural Camp area currently covered with a dense mixture of Shore Pine, Willow, Cedar, Alder, Manzanita, Douglas Fir, and Spruce trees along with a variety of shrubbery and bushes, including Huckleberry, Salal, Blackberry, Holly, etc.
A select number of the trees will be preserved within the Cultural Camp areas as designated by Tribal members. Additionally, certain ‘Elder’ trees within special areas designated as Elder Groves will be left virtually intact with little or no disturbance. The only work planned in one of the more significant Elder Groves will be a light, hand-clearing of some low shrubbery, excepting any Manzanita and Huckleberry, to open a meandering foot path or trail through the grove. Other trails will be constructed circumnavigating the Cultural Areas as well as a trail leading to an all natural cedar Plank house and a Sweat Lodge on the south end of the complex.
Silt-fencing was erected around the cleared & grubbed areas of the Shinny Field and the access road (Canoe Road) for erosion control from site work. In addition, one existing building which serves the Tribal Members as a Family Services Building is being readied for relocation to a new site across the intersection of Wallace Avenue and Neese Street. Site preparation for the new location is being prepared.
Other aspects of the new remodeling include, but are not limited to, asphalt paving to replace the existing gravel roadways, new sidewalks, curbs and parking improvements to serve the historic Tribal Hall building and adjacent Community Learning Center, a pond weir for better winter rainfall management for an on-site natural pond, a new Salmon Pit for the preparation of fresh-caught salmon, a new ADA access ramp leading to the Plank house and Sweat Lodge and some minor improvements to Flanagan Avenue skirting the southern end of the improvements complex.
Work is scheduled to be completed sometime in late June or early July of 2013, but the contractor has expressed a desire to move quickly on all work planned for an earlier completion date. So far, work is moving quickly and efficiently with weather cooperating nicely for the project. Stuntzner Engineering and Forestry is the principal design-engineering consultant and is managing all construction staking and general inspections.