Superintendent Chip Jenkins announced Monday that Mount Rainier National Park will begin public engagement for a transportation and visitor use management planning process for the Nisqually (Ashford area entrance) to Paradise travel corridor.

Residents will be given several opportunities to offer ideas, concerns and impressions regarding future management of transportation and visitor use within this area. The Mount Rainier National Park Story Map provides a multimedia overview of important locations and essential questions related to the plan, according to a press release.

Mount Rainier National Park is growing in popularity based on visitation growth, the release stated. Visitation increased 30 percent from 2008 to 2018. The park experiences extremely concentrated use with 70 percent of the more than 1 million visitors arriving between July and September. Further, most visitor use is concentrated in a relatively small number of popular destinations such as the Paradise area, and in overlooks and trails including Carter, Comet and Christine and Narada Falls.

The National Park Service is exploring proactive strategies that improve access to public lands while ensuring the protection of significant natural and cultural resources.

Public comments will be accepted between through Oct. 5. People can share their thoughts at https://parkplanning.nps.gov/nisquallycorridor. The park will be holding a virtual public meeting from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sept. 1 for people interested in learning about the project.   

For additional information about the planning effort, virtual public meeting and next steps, http://parkplanning.nps.gov/NisquallyCorridor.