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Parks staff joined neighbors on May 21th to dedicate the creek daylighting project. Mayor Greg Nickels was the keynote speaker for the event, which was well attended by the community. See the photos below of the daylighted creek and new entries.
The project is completed except for a portion of the site along the west side. We are unable to complete this work until the slide work underneath the Admiral Way bridge is completed by SPU. Once this occurs we will be able to come up the entry road to do some additional landscaping and remove construction debris. Also, the overall impacted area that was daylighted and restored will remain closed for restoration until the Summer of 2003. We will re-evaluate the site in July 2003 to see if it is ready to be reopened. Access is allowed through and around the site during this time.
Schmitz Preserve was donated to the city in pieces between 1908 and 1912. The most generous chunk came from a German immigrant/pioneer/banker/realtor named Ferdinand Schmitz, who served on the park commission during those years. It was Schmitz's idea, as he saw how rapidly the great forest was disappearing, to preserve part of it in its natural state. Upon transfer of the property to the City, the Schmitz family requested that the property was to be … at all times retained and used for park and parkway purposes… in order that certain natural features be preserved.
Even Schmitz's land had not been completely untouched by logging, though. Some huge stumps in the park still show deep notches hacked high above the ground for the "spring-boards" on which axe men would stand to avoid having to chop through the lower root crown, the thickest and hardest part of the tree. After 1908, however, the new park rapidly gained popularity as a quiet complement to the West Seattle park complex. Except for the paved entrance and a parking lot at the northwest corner, the park has remained essentially unchanged ever since.
Pro Parks Language:
Park improvements may include daylighting the creek, entry improvements, habitat restoration and reforestation.
Rebuild the drainage to handle heavy seasonal and storm flow capacities, include creek "daylighting" to provide a more natural appearance, but still with improved performance. This will include removal of the parking lot and restoration of that open area to a natural condition.
Parking lot will be removed from the interior of the Park.
The current parking lot and entry off Admiral will have to be closed down during construction.
This area will remained closed until plant establishment occurs.
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| Updated 6/13/2003 16:07
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