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City of Seattle
Ed Murray, Mayor

SUBJECT: Seattle Parks to Join Mayor, Community for Grand Opening of I-5 Colonnade

11/16/2005  4:53:00 PM

Seattle Parks to Join Mayor, Community for Grand Opening of I-5 Colonnade

Seattle Parks and Recreation will join Mayor Greg Nickels to celebrate the grand opening of the newest open space in the Eastlake and Capitol Hill neighborhoods: I-5 Colonnade. The grand opening celebration will take place on Saturday, Dec. 3, at noon at the open space, under I-5 in the area south of E Howe Street between Lakeview Boulevard and Franklin Avenue E.

I-5 Colonnade is a 7.5-acre open space that results from the collaborative efforts of Seattle Parks and Recreation, the Eastlake and Capitol Hill communities, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT), and the mountain bike, road bicycle, and dog off-leash area communities, to create one of the most unique open spaces in Seattle.

The project is located on WSDOT property, and has been converted into a public space with pedestrian and bicycle commuter connections between the Capitol Hill and Eastlake neighborhoods, a highly specialized mountain bike course, Seattle's tenth dog off-leash area, and public art. The project first came into focus in 1998 when the Eastlake Tomorrow Committee completed the 1998 Eastlake Neighborhood Plan. With the passage of the Pro Parks Levy in 2000, $1.8 million became available to develop the project. Working with the community to create a vision for the open space, Parks held a series of community meetings in 2003. Following that, Parks and WSDOT worked together to formulate a long-term lease of the property.

Uniquely, this project is covered by the interstate, giving it an almost indoor environment, which allows for a variety of uses throughout the year. The property also has dramatic views of Lake Union.

The project has art through the 1% For Art program, administered through the Mayor's Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs. San Francisco-based artist John Roloff has created "Climate Zone" that mimics the weather, as well as sun and moonlight.

Approved by Seattle voters in 2000, the $198.2 million Pro Parks Levy will fund more than 100 projects throughout the city over eight years. Projects include improvements to athletic fields, playgrounds, trails and community centers and parks. Funding will also increase green spaces, support Zoo programs and enhance park maintenance.

This project will help build a stronger community and healthy families, one of Mayor Greg Nickel's highest priorities for Seattle.

For more information, please contact Parks Project Manager Andy Sheffer at (206) 684-7041 or email him at

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Seattle Parks and Recreation

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