Letters to the Editor

Mansion doesn't fit in Ebey's Landing reserve

It is the mission of the Trust Board of Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve to preserve and protect the reserve’s rural working heritage for future generations. We share this great responsibility with our partners and with those that live, work and visit here.

In Crockett Prairie, the 112 year-old Samuel Crockett home is slated to be moved, salvaged or demolished later this year. In its stead, a new 5,000-square-foot house is planned. It is clear that the applicant has taken into consideration many elements of the Island County Historic Review Standards, such as color, height and roofline, but the location and size do not comply and, as a result, undermine the integrity of this important pioneer homestead. A setting that is nearly surrounded by conservation easements.

The Trust Board is disappointed that a building permit for this new residence was mistakenly approved through an administrative error within the Island County historic review process. The project as it stands is not in keeping with the spirit of the Island County standards that were established to preserve Island County’s regional history, architecture, scenic vistas and cultural heritage.

We will continue to work closely with our Island County partner to find ways to more effectively implement the county’s standards moving forward. By doing so, we can save applicants time and money, and we can ensure that new development is done in a way that respects our community’s need to adapt to new challenges, while protecting a nationally significant historical resource.

The presence of Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve enhances the health of the Central Whidbey community as it continues to grow and evolve. The local community recognizes the value of its historical inheritance and abundant natural resources. Our legacy will be how we treated and cared for this rich heritage. The saying rings true; for those to which much has been given, much is expected.

Trust Board of Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve:

Marshall Bronson, Marilyn Clay, Fran Einterz, Hank Florence, John Krambrink, Lisa Meserole, Jan Pickard, Jon Roberts, Al Sherman

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