University Heights Plaza
A multi-use community open space includes a performance area/plaza, rain gardens to improve stormwater quality, pedestrian pathways, lawn areas, basketball hoop, landscaped areas and other amenities. The design is sensitive to the view of the historic building's south façade.
The University Heights Elementary School served University District children from 1902 to 1989, when Seattle Public Schools closed the school. A year later it was open as a neighborhood center. The acquisition from Seattle School District and redevelopment of University Heights and its South Lot became a top community priority and identified in the University District Park Plan. University Heights Center and Seattle Parks and Recreation closed on their respective purchases of the historically landmarked building and open space in the summer of 2009. The 2008 Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund provided development funding for the park. The final design was the result of a collaborative partnership between SPR, SDOT, University Heights Community Center, other non-for-profit community organizations and the community. Through several community workshops, a strong community desire emerged to maximize the open space for multiple uses and to create a seamless design between the various properties. The design improvements include a multi-purpose plaza that functions for parking and to host festivals and events. The parking plaza flows into the park plaza which integrates scored panels for chalk art by adjacent school children and a basketball hoop and also functions as overflow gathering space for events.
We created a multi-use community open space for public use on the south side of University Heights Center for the Community (UHCC), including a performance area/plaza, rain gardens to improve storm water quality, landscaped areas and other amenities. The design incorporates the farmers market use on a portion of Parks property and the removal of parking from the Parks-owned portion of the site.