The View From Denny Park
Gregory J. Nickels, Mayor
Kenneth R Bounds, Superintendent
No. 34. April 9, 2003
A periodic electronic newsletter
about Parks and Recreation news, programs, projects and events
from Seattle Parks & Recreation Superintendent Ken Bounds
The View from Denny Park: News and Views from the Superintendent
KUBOTA GARDEN A HIDDEN GEM
We all know and frequent the parks of renownthe Green Lake,
Volunteer and Seward parks in our system but if youre
looking for a lesser known getaway to enjoy spring blossoms, I
urge you to visit Kubota Garden near the southeast border of the
city at Renton Ave. S. and 55th Ave. S.
Now would be an excellent time to see flowering trees such as
magnolia and cherry, and early rhododendron and azalea. The Kubota
Garden is at once tranquil and spectacular. Conceived by Fujitaro
Kubota in the 1920s, the 20-acre park blends Japanese and American
garden concepts in a unique landscape of hills, valleys, streams,
waterfalls, rock outcroppings, two traditional Asian bridges,
and a stone lantern.
With the help of the Pro Parks Levy, we will enhance the garden
with a series of projects, beginning construction next year, to
improve drainage, irrigation, maintenance and accessibility for
disabled persons. A new entry court with stone pavers,
plaza and benches, funded with Pro Parks Levy dollars, will complement
an entry gate and wall, sponsored by the Kubota Garden Foundation
and funded in part by a grant from the Neighborhood Matching Fund.
The gate will be designed by famed Seattle sculptor Gerald Tsutakawa.
Another upcoming project, funded by the Parks Cumulative Reserve
Fund, is the construction of a new facility for the garden crew,
headed by senior gardener Don Brooks.
The Kubota Garden Foundation also sponsors garden tours, volunteer
work parties, and spring and fall plant sales. For
more information about the Foundation, please visit www.kubota.org/
For more information about the Pro Parks Levy project at Kubota,
GAS WORKS PARK OFF-LEASH AREA PROPOSAL
I will make a decision later this month on a site plan for the
northwest section of Gas Works Park.
Off-leash area supporters want a dog off-leash area included
in the site. The idea, which is stirring public opinions both
pro and con, was broached at a recent public meeting for this
Pro Parks Levy project. The project description in the Levy calls
for park improvements in the undeveloped northwest corner of the
park creating a connection to the recently completed Wallingford
I will base my decision on a number of factors, including public
input, the recommendation of the Board of Park Commissioners,
and previous planning documents such as the Gas Works Park Master
Plan, the Wallingford Neighborhood Plan, the Seattle Parks and
Recreation Plan 2000, and City Council Resolution 29628, which
includes site selection criteria for off-leash areas.
I appreciate hearing from citizens in writing and in person at
project public meetings and at the public hearing before the Park
Board on March 27. The Board will make its recommendation on April
10, and I will make a decision soon afterward.
AUDUBON AGREEMENT NEAR
In an important boost to our environmental stewardship programs,
we are nearing final agreement with the National Audubon Society
for Audubons use, occupancy and co-funding of an Audubon
nature center at Seward Park.
We will present the proposal to the Park Board on April 10. As
proposed, the project would renovate the Annex building and make
minor improvements to the former Fish Hatchery. The Annex would
house offices for the Departments Teens for Recreation and
Environmental Conservation (TREC) program, a naturalist on loan
to Audubon and Audubon center staff. The Annex would also include
classrooms, conference rooms, and a lobby. Of the $2 million cost
of the project, the City would pay $618,600 from the Pro Parks
Levy, and Audubon would raise and contribute the rest.
Upon approval of the agreement by City Council ordinance, project
design would begin with construction expected to occur in 2004.
If you have any comments on this proposal, please send them to
Seattles Olmsted park legacy was featured in a comprehensive
collection of articles in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer earlier
this month. Please see http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/115362_olmsted02.shtml
From May 1 to 4, the National Association for Olmsted Parks will
hold its annual conference in Seattle featuring lectures, workshops,
presentations and tours. Registration is under way. For more information,
please visit www.seattle.gov/friendsofolmstedparks/
or call Kari Stiles at (206) 332-9915.
I will be in touch soon.