Federal Register: October 16, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 201)
DOCID: fr16oc08-85 FR Doc E8-24500
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
National Park Service
ACTION: Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.:
DOCUMENT ACTION: Notice of Availability of an Environmental Assessment for the transfer of jurisdiction to the District of Columbia of a portion of Fort Dupont Park.
Notice of Availability of an Environmental Assessment on a Proposed Transfer of Jurisdiction of a Portion of Fort Dupont Park, Washington, DC
DATES: Public comment on the EA will be accepted until November 17, 2008.
In accordance with Sec. 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act, 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq., (NEPA), and the National Park Service's Director's Order 12: Conservation Planning, Environmental Impact Analysis, and Decisionmaking, the National Park Service (NPS) has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) for transferring jurisdiction of a portion of NPS property within Fort Dupont Park, one of the Fort Circle Parks, to the District of Columbia (District) for recreational development and uses, and resulting in the possible amendment of the NPS' 2004 Final Management Plan for Fort Circle Parks (Management Plan).
Fort Dupont Park, Washington, DC,
The NPS is considering transferring
jurisdiction to the District over a 15acre parcel at one end of Fort
Dupont Park (the Project Area), that is currently used for recreational
purposes. The transfer would facilitate the development of new
recreational facilities and programs in the Project Area by the
District, including a proposal to create a baseball academy for area
youth and another to expand an existing indoor ice skating arena. The
District's proposal would involve the help of privatesector partners.
If the decision is made to go forward with this transfer, it would [[Page 61440]]
occur pursuant to U.S. Code Title 40 Section 8124 (40 U.S.C. 8124), which authorizes transfers of jurisdiction in the District of Columbia. The 376acre Fort Dupont Park is one of the Civil War Defenses of Washington and is one of the Fort Circle Parks managed by the NPS. In 2004, the NPS completed the Management Plan and an action to transfer these lands to the District would likely result in amendment of that plan.
The EA studies the potential impacts of the proposed transfer to the District, of the approximately 15 acres situated on the north side of Fort Dupont Park along Ely Place in Southeast Washington, DC. In addition to the indoor ice skating arena, the Project Area contains ballfields, basketball and tennis courts and a parking lot, among other features. The Project Area is not in an area of Fort Dupont Park that is associated with the Civil War Defense of Washington, and does not contain earthworks or other historic or archeological resources. Once transferred, the Project Area would no longer be part of the Park and no longer be managed or administered by the NPS.
The NPS is using this EA to decide whether to go forward with this transfer to the District, and the EA contains the information currently known about the District's plans for the Project Area if the transfer does occur. The EA evaluates two alternatives: The no action alternative (Alternative 1), and the preferred alternative (Alternative 2), which proposes to transfer jurisdiction of the Project Area to the District. Alternative 2, to transfer jurisdiction, provides four separate options for the possible configuration of the Fort Dupont Ice Arena expansion and three separate options on how the proposed Youth Baseball Academy facilities could be configured on the site, with one option that maintains the multipurpose sports field within the Project Area.
Under Alternative 2, the Fort Dupont Ice Arena would be expanded to approximately twice its current size and a Youth Baseball Academy would be established on site. The Youth Baseball Academy would require the construction of a building to support administrative functions and three ball fields, including one regulation sized baseball field, two softball fields, and associated parking. One of the options presented under Alternative 2 also includes a multipurpose sports field such as a football/soccer field. The three existing basketball courts and four existing tennis courts located within the Project Area would remain, with responsibility for the facilities there, including the indoor ice skating arena transferred from NPS to the District along with the land which would no longer be part of Fort Dupont Park. The transfer of jurisdiction would necessitate amending the Management Plan, which provides a managerial framework for decisions about use and development within the Fort Circle Parks, including Fort Dupont Park. On the other hand, under Alternative 1, which is the no action alternative, the current layout, condition, and management of Fort Dupont Park would not change. The proposed development would not occur and the Management Plan would not be amended.
Information and comments gathered during public meetings and an
extended scoping period were considered in the preparation of this EA
to identify the range of issues and potential impacts of this proposed
action. The NPS also coordinated and consulted with the District and
federal agencies to identify issues and concerns related to the natural and cultural resources.
Dated: October 6, 2008.
Lisa A. MendelsonIelmini,
Regional Director, National Capital Region.
[FR Doc. E824500 Filed 101508; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4312JUP
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
Gayle Hazelwood, Superintendent, National Capital ParksEast, RE: Fort Dupont Park Land Transfer Proposal, at 1900 Anacostia Drive, SE., Washington, DC 20020 or by telephone at (202) 6905127, or by email at email@example.com.