Chorus of boos, cries of 'shame' over proposed zip line in park



SEATTLE - Hundreds of people angry over a zip line proposed for West Seattle's Lincoln Park turned out to rail against the idea at a community meeting Tuesday night.


Booing and shouting "Shame on you," the crowd directed their feelings toward the Seattle Parks Department, which has been quietly talking with zip line operator Go Ape since last year.


"We're not tree huggers, but I don't think this is an appropriate use of a city park," said one participant at the meeting at the Fauntleroy Community Association.


Neighbors said the zip line would ruin the natural, forested setting of Lincoln Park.


Parks Department employees explained that they had been going through an internal review before involving the public.


"If we brought every potential project to the public we would spend hours, hours in public meetings that never resulted in anything," said Rebecca Salinas of the Parks Department.


A zip line would generate about $69,000 a year for the city.  It would need City Council approval.


Chris Swallow of Go Ape tried to keep smiling through the two hour meeting, Johnson reported.


"This one was is unique," Swallow said.


"More opposition than you've seen elsewhere?" asked Johnson.


"More opposition," Swallow said.


When asked whether the meeting caused him to question whether the proposal was a good idea, Swallow said, "There's a lot of opposition."


The Parks Department has scheduled a meeting about the proposal for Aug. 11.