The 2014 Ballard Open Space Plan sought to gain a better understanding of our community’s current and future open space needs and to identify opportunities to create and enhance parks and public open spaces in the greater Ballard area.
17th Ave NW between NW 62nd and 63rd Sts.
In the 1990’s Groundswell NW and the Ballard Open Space Coalition (BOSC) first identified property at the corner of 17th Ave NW and NW 63rd as an acquisition opportunity as part of their Ballard/Crown Hill Open Space Inventory and Action Plan. In 2003, Seattle Parks Department purchased this property and in 2007, purchased the adjacent property to the south. With word of a new park in the making, the Friends of 63rd St Pocket park (now Friends of Ballard Corners Park) applied for and received matching grants from the Department of Neighborhoods to hire Barker Landscape Architects to work with the community to design and develop this unique pocket park complete with a stone living room, an homage to the old corner store, a children’s climbing structure, fruit trees and a rain garden. Ballard Corners Park celebrated their grand opening Oct 10, 2009 as Groundswell NW celebrated our 20th anniversary. Groundswell NW continues to partner with the Friends of Ballard Corners Park through fiscal sponsorship and supporting their efforts to care for and activate the park.
Ballard Corners Park & King 5 Evening
CLICK HERE to see the 2017 interview at Ballard Corners Park and the National Wildlife Federation.
David Folweiler contact: email@example.com
The Friends of Ballard Corners Park hosts a work party twice a year, spring and fall. Subscribe to our newsletter to learn about the next opportunity.
NW 58th between 6th Ave NW and 32nd Ave NW, 17th Ave NW between NW 90th St and Ballard Ave.
Greenways are slow, low-traffic streets connecting parks, libraries, schools, and businesses for pedestrians and bicyclists who need safe and comfortable routes through the City. Formed in 2011, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways, http://seattlegreenways.org/, began as a volunteer coalition representing many neighborhoods across Seattle to plan and advocate for the City to build neighborhood greenways. Ballard residents and Groundswell NW, along with other Ballard community organizations came together to support a greenway along NW 58th St. resulting in Ballard’s first greenway opening September 2013 with a second greenway along 17th Ave NW opening in 2016. Groundswell NW continues to partner with the Ballard Neighborhood Greenways group through fiscal sponsorship and advocate for neighborhood greenways as the City considers new routes in Ballard.
The Ballard Greenways group meets monthly.
Contact http://ballardgreenways.org/contact/ to receive information about future meetings.
8735 19th Ave NW, 98117
This 4,000-square-foot park, located in the Crown Hill neighborhood, has many trees and native plants, boulder seating areas, and a winding nature path. It is a quiet spot at the convergence of two street ends, connected by a staircase. Groundswell NW identified this space in the mid 1990s as part of the Ballard Open Space plan and the City purchased the property in 1997 for park development.
More natural area than park, Crown Hill Glen is tucked away between 19th and 20th NW where these two avenues dead-end at NW 89th Street. First identified as an open space opportunity through Groundswell NW’s Open Space Inventory in 1996, the site is a hidden gem, and testament to the ongoing stewardship of its neighbors.
The natural surroundings look as if they have always been there...but this is not the case at all. George and Theadora Plumis, who were married in 1931, bought these four lots and the adjoining house and lot to the south in 1940. This was the Plumis' first home and its then rural surroundings gave Mr. Plumis a chance to recreate a bit of the farming culture of their Greek homeland by raising chickens, goats, sheep, and fruit trees. During the war, it served as a Victory Garden. It was plowed by horse until well into the 50's!
The Plumis' children sold the house and south lot to private individuals, but the park land was purchased with Conservation Futures Tax funds through the Seattle Open Space program. Groundswell NW played a key role in the acquisition, then with the North Salmon Bay Community Forestry Board got an initial grant from the Washington State Department of Natural Resources to develop the site. Neighbors hired Barker Landscape Architects to hold community meetings, and come up with an urban forest plan.
The plan included many native plants, a nature trail, a natural play area, and a stair climb which connects 19th and 89th to help unite the previously divided neighborhood. Natural elements, recycled materials, porous surfaces for drainage, columnar basalt bird baths, logs, boulders, benches, and water for irrigation create a rich habitat area.
Funding included a Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Matching Fund award, a grant from King County Department of Natural Resources, with help from the Seattle Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates, and King County Council member Larry Phillips. Throughout the planning, development, and construction of the park, Groundswell NW acted as fiscal sponsor, providing non-profit tax status.
The most amazing thing was the response from the neighbors who organized a garage sale, a bake sale and family dance, a barn dance at the Tractor Tavern, donations from local businesses, plus many hours spent digging out weeds from the site. Even the children pitched in, carrying buckets of rocks and mud from here to there.
The Friends of Crown Hill Glen continues to tend the site with monthly work parties. See the GNW event calendar for the next work party
How To Grow a Park - Seattle Ignite 2013
14th Ave NW between NW 59th and NW 61st
The intent of the 14th Ave NW Park proposes to convert two or more blocks of 14th Ave NW between NW 59th and 61st from existing roadway and parking median to a linear community park green space, green infrastructure, and incorporate safety improvements for pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles for 2 blocks along the east side of the street. This proposal builds on a Visioning process begun in 2006 by the East Ballard Community Association through a Department of Neighborhood’s Small and Simple Matching Grant (14th Ave NW Visioning Project, Carlson Architects) to create a linear park along 14th Ave NW from NW 65th to Salmon Bay.
In 2011, the park received funding from through the Seattle Parks Levy and hired Mithun to work with the community to design the park. In 2016, the park was give the name “Gemenskap” pronounced Yuh-MEN-skawp), which is the Swedish word for community. This park is still in the design phase with plans to break ground by 2017.
Groundswell NW has partnered with the East Ballard Community Association since 2005 through mentorship and fiscal sponsorship.
The East Ballard Community Association meets monthly, hosts adopt a street clean ups in the Spring and Fall, and other events throughout the year. Subscribe to our newsletter to learn about the next opportunity.
Groundswell NW has worked with Seattle Public Utilities and other partners to raise over $1 million to purchase and restore public access improvements on this "last wooded shoreline in Ballard," south of NW 54th St. just east of the RR bridge.
After six years of community effort, the Salmon Bay Natural Area was preserved through a phased purchase. Groundswell NW led the effort to preserve this last remaining undeveloped, wooded bank along the Salmon Bay waterway. The shoreline property flanks both sides of the 34th Ave. NW street end, between The Canal and the railroad bridge. Together with the street-end and adjacent publicly owned land, the Salmon Bay Natural Area protects over 680 linear feet of largely undeveloped estuarine shoreline.
The property went on the market in the summer of 2000. In the year following, Groundswell NW worked to craft a purchase strategy, using a variety of resources, from city, county, state, and federal salmon recovery funds to Neighborhood Matching Funds. Over $65,000 was contributed from private sources, including $10,000 from Consolidated Restaurants, owners of the former Hiram's Restaurant. The project received a major boost from City Council member Richard Conlin, who sponsored a $335,000 allocation from the Seattle Public Utilities budget. Groundswell NW received Neighborhood Matching Fund awards to develop conceptual plans for the site and $150,000 for acquisition. A $160,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and a $50,000 King Conservation District grant put the total at over $750,000 to date.
The first phase purchase included the parcel just east of the 34th Ave. NW shoreline street end and three parcels just east of the railroad bridge containing a small house and boatshed. The sale agreement, negotiated by Cascade Land Conservancy, included a contract to purchase the last parcel, just west of the street end, over the next 18 months. A number of private and public funding sources were pursued, which allowed the complete acquisition.
The property was first identified as a top priority acquisition opportunity in the 1996 Ballard/Crown Hill Open Space Inventory. In 1997 developers proposed to build five homes west of the street-end and a three-story commercial building to the east, essentially between Hiram's deck and the water. The exception in Seattle Shoreline Code that allowed single-family development over water in this area was rescinded by the City Council, following the listing of Puget Sound salmon as an endangered species. This precluded the over-water portion of the development proposal, while leaving open the possibility of water-dependent commercial development.
The Salmon Bay Natural Area offers a rare opportunity to enhance the degraded estuary of the greater Lake Washington watershed, a critical environment in the life cycle of threatened Puget Sound salmon. As the smolts make their way through the Locks, battered and disoriented by the abrupt transition to salt water and vulnerable to predators, an area for refuge and adjustment to the new environment is essential for their survival. Restoration of this property will enhance this refuge, giving the smolts a better chance of gaining the body weight they need to thrive in the open ocean. The property will also offer a public overlook and resting spot adjacent to the Burke Gilman Trail completion, and an educational site where people can learn more about the importance of Ballard's shoreline to the salmon recovery picture.
Using a matching fund grant to develop conceptual plans for the site, Groundswell NW hired J.A. Brennan Associates Landscape Architects. Jim Brennan, who led the design of Webster Playground, helped conduct a Design Workshop in October 2001. Ideas discussed include enhancing urban estuarine habitat, educating the public on its importance in the life cycle of salmon and other wildlife, a viewpoint providing great views of the Salmon Bay Waterway, and interpretive signage describing the key role of this estuary and efforts to restore it. Groundswell NW and the City of Seattle continue to make progress on these objectives. In addition work parties are held regularly to clean up the site and surrounding areas; remove blackberries, ivy, and other invasive species; and plant new species to restore the habitat quality of the site.
Email Dave Boyd
The Seattle Clean Street Collective hosts cleanups once a month on Saturdays from 10AM-12PM. The location will vary by month, and you can subscribe to their mailing list to stay up to date with each event. They typically start with breakfast and introductions before heading out for an hour and a half of street cleaning.
Seattle Clean Street Collective
Groundswell NW Microgrant Recipient April 2017
The Seattle Clean Street Collective is a dynamic group of volunteers brought together from various neighborhoods in King County to educate and inspire environmental cleanliness and health. The team works with volunteers to keep our streets clean and beautiful. They conduct bi-monthly clean-ups throughout Seattle, where they collect trash and debris for proper disposal. In December 2016, Seattle Clean Street Collective reached out to Groundswell NW for a microgrant and to help with outreach to the NW Seattle community. Groundswell NW awarded a $500 microgrant towards purchasing custom t-shirts, fluorescent safety vests, an A-frame sign, and promotional yard signs. On April 9, 2017, The Seattle Clean Street Collective hosted a cleanup event at the Ballard Locks and will be hosting future events that will be posted on our events calendar.
Median along 36th Ave. NW flanking both sides of 38th Ave. NW sidewalk from Seaview to the Burlington Northern right-or-way.
In 2008, Sunset Hill neighbors came together to improve the corridor between Sunset Hill and Shilshole Ave. They applied for and received a Department of Neighborhoods Small and Simple Matching grant to develop a concept plan to improve this important corridor and then to do one or more modest landscape enhancement projects. The grant paid for a design consultant, Barker Landscape Architects to work with the community, City departments and adjacent private property owners to create a plan to:
The Friends of Sunset Hill Shilshole Gateway host work parties throughout the year. Subscribe to our newsletter to learn about the next opportunity.
876 N 36th St
When you think of iconic spots to visit in Seattle, The Fremont Troll will be at the top of your list. This is why it was such an honor for Groundswell NW to become the fiscal sponsors for the Friend’s of the Troll’s Knoll who had a great idea back in 2009 to create a park and p-patch along the east and west sides of the Troll. With Kimberly Scrivner in the lead organizing her neighbors, the west side of the park received $685,000 in 2011 through the Seattle Parks and Green Spaces Levy and opened to the public May of this year. If you’re standing facing the Troll, walk along the sidewalk to your left and follow the windy path up the hill along a green space to a bench with a view and community P-Patch at the top.
With ½ of their vision under wraps, Friends of the Troll’s Knoll are still on a roll and are concentrating their efforts now on the east side with a new neighbor in the lead, Kaley Bender. Kaley brought neighbors together for a block party in August with the help of a Department of Neighborhood Small Sparks grant. We’re also pleased to announce that Friends of the Troll's Knoll is our most recent recipient of a $450 microgrant from Groundswell NW! These funds will provide key resources for their inaugural clean up day on October 8th. SDOT will also be helping by providing labor to pull out blackberry bushes, do some landscape cleanup and mulching. There will also be future community events for this site in the coming year, thanks to Tableau Software who just awarded $5,300 to support these events! Congrats to Friends of the Troll's Knoll, thank-you Tableau for supporting this great community project and thank-you to grass-roots community organizers like Kimberly and Kaley who continue to inspire us to create, activate and care for parks, open space and habitat!
Sunset Substation Park
Hazel Heights P-Patch
Broadview Emergency Hub
Burke Gilman Trail