Burke-Gilman Playground Park Renovation

Updated: July 30, 2020

Summer 2020

Seattle Parks and Recreation is working with the Eli's Park Project and the community to create a park tailored to be welcoming to all. Grounded in the principles of equity, the project's plan has been informed by authentic listening, learning and collaboration between the people experiencing exclusion from nature and the people planning/ designing the park. Through an extensive community learning process, we have heard that people with physical and medical disabilities, people of color, senior citizens, immigrants, people living in poverty, teenagers, people of all genders and sexual orientation - all people - want to experience nature and community but are too often excluded. As in all Seattle Parks and Recreation capital projects an inclusive design process is critical. Together with our community partner, we worked to prioritize the voices of those that are least often heard in order to ensure that this park will serve us all.

In response to the community engagement and feedback, the following aspects are being considered for the new park:    
Parallel pathways that encircle the park providing access to walking, biking, running and exploration of the park-providing an entry point to physical activity regardless of experience and level of activity; Accessible surfaces throughout the park to allow people of all abilities and fitness levels access to strengthen their bodies and minds; Sensory experiences to encourage people to move throughout the park to discover a variety of experiences; Play pockets to invite people to be active and expand their minds through physical activity and challenging play opportunities; and Nature interwoven throughout the park providing respite and encouraging prolonged time outdoors.  

Please visit our website www.elispark.org to learn more.
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Burke-Gilman Playground Park, 5201 Sand Point Way NE, 98105


Neighborhood Matching Fund, provided $43,200 for planning and $25,000 for design development.

As of the beginning of 2020, the project has secured over $1 million in private funding and an additional $1 million in public funding. Total project funding is estimated at $4 million. Please visit the Eli's Park Project website www.elispark.org for the most current information and to donate.


Design: Summer 2018 - Winter 2019/20
Construction: Funding and Permitting Contingent: Summer 2021

Project Description

The purpose of this project is to renovate the Burke-Gilman Playground Park into a nature-based park for people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities. An innovative collaboration between Seattle Parks and Recreation and a diverse community group will result in a beautifully renovated park where people can find play, peace and belonging.

Using the Neighborhood Matching Fund and working with Seattle Parks and Recreation the consultant selection completed with the hiring of landscape architects at Site Workshop who are leading an inclusive design process.

The community approached Seattle Parks and Recreation in 2017 with their ideas to renovate the Burke-Gilman Playground Park to be accessible, inclusive and nature-based. In 2018, they received a Neighborhood Matching Fund award from the Department of Neighborhoods for the purpose of renovating the park at Burke-Gilman Playground Park into a space that will provide access to nature and community for our diverse community.

Community Participation

Public Meetings for Eli's Park Project - A community initiated project 
   •  Informational Flier

Hear from Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent of Seattle Parks and Recreation

In the news!

Seattle's new inclusive park to be made in memory of boy with down syndrome - KOMO News

Family wants to renovate park in memory of special toddler - King 5 News

All are welcome and wanted on our journey to design a park for all. The more diverse our interactions, the more inclusive our world can become. To receive notifications about upcoming meetings, please join the Eli's Park Project mailing list.