Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands

Updated: October 3, 2016

Summer 2016

Construction will begin in early summer and last through spring 2017.
The Friends of Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands, Seattle Tilth, Seattle Parks Foundation and Seattle Parks and Recreation are pleased to announce that a suitable construction bid has been received and a contract has been executed with A1 Landscaping and Construction. Construction will provide great benefits to the site and some programs will still be available at the site.

Construction Benefits

  • Better use of site. The site improvements will demonstrate the "farm to table" experience and bring to life the food system in a powerful and interconnected way with full community engagement.
  • New classroom. The new building will provide extensive opportunities for hands-on environmental stewardship and food production education for the community, directly on site at a community based urban farm.
  • Commercial kitchen. We will prepare food harvested at the farm, providing cooking and nutrition education with school and community groups, the first time we will have a functional kitchen for cooking, teaching and food preparation.
  • Office space. Staff will work on site to administer programs, being part of the fabric of the community with year-round facilities.
  • Improved access. The new gate at Beer Sheva Park will allow community members greater access to the farm and a new circle drive will better accommodate school buses, delivery vans and service trucks.

Programs During Construction

  • Programming will be scaled back during construction and access will be limited on the farm.
  • The program focus during construction is on wetlands restoration work parties with volunteers.
  • The farm will be open limited hours and the gate will be locked otherwise.

We hope to get a hot spot for limited internet connection.

Rainier Beach Farm and Wetlands


Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetland, 5513 S Cloverdale St, Seattle WA 98118


Total Project Budget - $3.34 million
$500,000 Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund
$965,000 Seattle Parks Foundation (fundraising continues)
$75,000 Department of Neighborhoods Neighborhood Matching Fund
$291,000 Washington State Funding
$300,000 2014 Adopted City of Seattle CIP


Planning: January - April 2012
Design: May 2012 - Current
Construction: Summer 2016 - Spring 2017
Completion: Summer 2017

Project Description

This project was selected for the first round of Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Funding. The application received in this community-initiated process is a preliminary concept and the final design may be constrained by the project budget.

The goal of the project is to establish a unique green infrastructure development project transforming the Atlantic City Nursery into a working organic urban farm and demonstration wetlands restoration site.

All projects will go through Park’s public involvement procedure which includes public meetings and community input. They will also go through an internal Parks process to ensure the most effective implementation.

The property is the low area that separates the Pritchard Island residential area from the original lake shoreline and the residential area to the west. The property is bordered on the north and south by adjacent park property; Pritchard Island Beach Park (separated by Cloverdale) and Beer Sheva/Atlantic City Park to the south and west.

Seattle Parks and Recreation’s “Atlantic City Nursery” was closed January 2010. The Atlantic City Nursery was included in the Shoreline Management Study.

In November 2010 the Acting Superintendent, Christopher Williams endorsed the Use Plan proposed by the Board of Park Commissioners for Atlantic City Nursery site. Please see attached. The Acting Superintendent supports the urban agriculture use, improving safety and providing for public access for the site.

Project Timeline

Fall 2015
Our June bid process resulted in bids that exceeded the funding amount. We were not able to accept a bid and start construction. We are working closely with our partners to determine the best path forward which may include value engineering and identifying additional funds. We are all disappointed by the escalating costs of construction but are focused on moving forward. Thank you for your patience and continued support.

Spring/Summer 2015
The project will be advertised for bids in June. A community event is being planned to bring neighbors and provide an update. Watch this site and other venues for the announcement.

Winter/Spring 2015
Fundraising is nearly complete. The goal is to start construction in June. The farm is alive and vibrant. Seattle Tilth hosts events, classes and many opportunities to learn about gardening and nature.

Fall/Winter 2014
The fundraising campaign is coming to a close and the construction documents will be completed. Permits and final tasks are underway for a fall bid. City Council approved the modifications to the development standards which will provide Seattle Tilth with the tools they need to reach their goals.

Spring 2014
The fundraising campaign has been successful and is in full swing. Construction document preparation is continuing along with working through the permit process. The Master Use Permit is being evaluated and we hope to present in front of City Council in May.

Fall 2013
After the last meeting the design team moved forward with construction documents and permitting. During this time Seattle Parks Foundation started a campaign to raise funds for a second phase of improvements. We soon determined that it would be in the best interest of the project to combine the two phases into one single phase. This is the direction we are now following which means construction will not occur in 2013. A community meeting will be held to re-connect with the people and share the latest information on the progress of the project prior to the start construction.

Spring 2013
Parks, the Friends of RBUFW, Seattle Tilth and the Berger Partnership are working together on the public planning process for the renovation of the nursery space into an urban farm and restoring the existing wetlands. Seattle Parks and Recreation selected Seattle Tilth and the Friends of RBUFW in 2011 through a competitive public selection process for the development and long-term operation of an urban agriculture and wetland preservation and enhancement project.

The Management and Operating Agreement between Seattle Parks, Seattle Tilth and the Friends of Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands was presented to the Parks and Neighborhoods City Council Committee on August 16, 2012. The Committee and Full Council approved the agreement.