Officials broke ground Monday for a new parking lot at Trailhead Park for the Badger Mountain hiking trails in Richland.
More than 200,000 visits were recorded last year on the 1,600-foot mountain that has four official trails. That makes Badger one of the most hiked mountains in the state.
Currently, there is one paved parking lot and one dirt lot with about 30 to 40 parking spaces, depending on how closely vehicles park.
That’s not enough to meet demand and leads many visitors to park on Queensgate Drive, causing problems for residents.
The new lot will add about 50 spaces.