When you think of Groundswell NW, you may first think about parks, but our mission is deeper than that and focuses on nurturing and empowering you, our neighbors, to create, activate and care for not only parks, but also the natural habitat. As we learned while we were updating the Ballard Open Space Plan, large parcels of land to create new natural areas for habitat are hard to find, but, what we do have is a lot of backyards and even patio and deck space that can provide food, water and shelter for our local wildlife! This is why Groundswell NW has joined the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) to sponsor NW Seattle as an active Community Wildlife Habitat with the intent of getting certification for our community within the next 5 years.
We are seeking neighbors and partnering organizations to help us spread the word and provide mentorship. If youre interested in helping, please contact us today! To get started on your own gardening for wildlife adventure, visit NWF’s website. The site offers access to continually-updated information and resources for habitat projects, along with a wealth of other information on wildlife and wild places, and how to help protect these precious natural resources.
BALLARD OPEN SPACE PLAN
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. Contact Dawn Hemminger to learn more.
Our identification of this abandoned City Light facility at 76th St. and 6th Ave. NW as an open space opportunity and support for a neighborhood group looking to transform it into a pocket park led to funding for acquisition through the ProParks Levy. The new park opened in May 2005.
Groundswell NW assisted in identifying and purchasing the property. We also acted as fiscal sponsor and advisor in the Neighborhood Matching Fund process and helped the community build the park.
BALLARD CORNERS PARK
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.
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. Contact: David Folweiler firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 Ball ard Neighborhood Greenways group through fiscal sponsorship and advocate for neighborhood greenways as the City considers new routes in Ballard.
The Ballard Greenways group meetings monthly. Contact http://ballardgreenways.org/contact/ to receive information about future meetings.
This 4,000-square-foot park, located in the Crown Hill neig
hborhood, 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 t
here...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 pri
vate 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.
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:
remove noxious and invasive plants plant low growing, drought tolerant plants improve visibility and sight lines improve the pedestrian connections beautify the area and increase the pleasures of walking, biking and driving