Pathways Park - Burke-Gilman Playground Renovation

Updated: March 26, 2024

Spring 2024

Pathways Park (previously known as Burke-Gilman Playground Park)

Work continues to progress! Over the past few weeks, various art elements have been installed throughout the park! The contractor team is working on painting various exterior elements including the restroom building, the layout of the irrigation system and completion of the bioretention cells. Carpentry work continues for the build-out of the overlook deck that will provide lovely views into the adjacent ravine on the site.  

One of the most dramatic additions to the site was the arrival of the Whole Tree elements. These elements fit in well with the nature play concept of the park and symbolize natural snags one might find in the landscape. These snags provide a sense of welcome and visual landmark. They are located throughout the park in the sensory garden, overlook, bioswales, picnic shelter and entry.

 Pathways Park Construction

Pathways Park Construction

Pathways Park Construction

The project will be open to the public this summer! Please save the date for a ribbon cutting and community party on Saturday, June 8, 2024. Check back soon for more details!  

Until then, the park will remain closed during construction. Construction activities will adhere to all SMC code (25.08C) requirements. But note, the north portion of the site along the Burke Gilman Trail and Metropolitan Market remains open. 

Check out a few of our other nearby parks during the closure:

Bryant Neighborhood Playground Park
Laurelhurst Playfield Park
Magnuson Park
Ravenna Park
Ravenna-Eckstein Park
SUN Park


Pathways Park (Burke-Gilman Playground Park), 5201 Sand Point Way NE, 98105


The approximately $4.8 million project was funded through a combination of private and public contributions. These include but are not limited to the King County Parks Levy, REET I and Washington State Local Community Projects, and the Seattle Parks Foundation.

Please visit the Eli's Park Project website for the most current information and to donate.


Design: Summer 2018 - Spring 2022
Construction: Beginning Mid-April 2023
Completion: Spring 2024

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. The upgrades are in response to community engagement efforts by Eli’s Park Project which highlighted the desire for a park that is welcoming and accessible to all abilities. 

Here is the Illustrative Site Plan. The renovation includes improvements to the comfort station, parking, pedestrian lighting, storm water management, irrigation, new plantings, art elements, new play equipment, site furnishings, barbeques, bike racks and more.

As part of the renovation, the community wanted to ensure the park had a name that reflected the vision for this park, which was to create an accessible, inclusive, nature-based park space where people of all ages, abilities and identities can find play and peace.

The community approached Seattle Parks and Recreation in 2017. 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

Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) has determined that the project does not have a probable significant adverse impact on the environment. An environmental impact statement (EIS) is not required under RCW 43.21C.030(2)(c). This decision was made after review of a completed environmental checklist and other information on file with SPR. This information is available to the public on request. The Determination of Non-Significance was issued May 27, 2021.

Download the DNS document for additional information
Download the Analysis and Decision of SPR
View the SEPA Environmental Checklist document here

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

View the Playground Site Renovation Plan

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.

Parks and Recreation

AP Diaz, Superintendent
Mailing Address: 100 Dexter Ave N, Seattle, WA, 98109
Phone: (206) 684-4075
Fax: (206) 615-1813

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