Millersylvania is an historic state park, a regional gem, accommodating 500,000 annual visitors, including thousands of bicyclists, runners, swimmers, triathletes, boaters, anglers, campers, hikers, students and other nature enthusiasts every year. It is home to many diverse species and old growth trees.
The park houses a year-round environmental learning center on the shores of Deep Lake, a small, quiet lake popular for its relaxing ambience, where anglers do not have to compete with jet-skis or speedboats. See more information about the park’s history and happenings.
Millersylvania is a boon to the local economy and one of the county's largest tourist attractions. The half-million annual visitors support hundreds of jobs and local businesses, spending millions of dollars per year in the area. Park visitors spent $546,387 at the park in 2019. According to “Economic Analysis of Outdoor Recreation at Washington’s State Parks” the average visitor contributes $22.39 to the local economy. With approximately 500,000 annual visitors that totals an annual economic impact to the county of $11,195,000. These dollars are at extreme risk should the NorthPoint development go forward.
In an effort to protect more of the area around the park, the Miles Sand and Gravel property near what was the southern border of Millersylvania State Park was acquired by the park. When funds are available, a new access road will be created off Maytown Road.
The family that owns the McIntosh Tree Farm – 1100 acres of long-term, undeveloped forest around the park and the Port of Tacoma's property – has incorporated land into Millersylvania’s Long-Range Boundary Plan, thus demonstrating the commitment of both parties to protect the integrity of the park by preserving adjoining lands.
The area around Millersylvania, the privately owned forests, and the Fish and Wildlife Preserve consists of low-density rural residential, farms and sizable parcels that are largely undeveloped, pristine, intact habitats. The importance of connecting and securing these large tracts of land is to provide safe wildlife corridors and adequate aquifer recharge areas, as well as to maintain the rural character – what may become the only regional reprieve from interstate traffic and city bustle. (See Location and Maps.)
The runoff from hundreds of acres of impervious surface would likely flood the surrounding wetlands, destroying habitat and draining into Deep Lake, polluting the waters, killing fish and other wildlife.
NorthPoint's plans for a huge facility could route 1000s of trucks per day from Interstate 5 onto Tilley Road, Maytown Road, 93rd, and Hwy 507 competing with RVs, park-goers and local residents. Train traffic will likely be increased greatly; one set of tracks running parallel to Maytown Road and Millersylvania would likely block traffic on a regular basis.