Downtown sidewalks coming back to pedestrian life will never be the same. On some parts of the Pike-Pine corridor, they’ll be widened and paved and planted better, according to city plans for the waterfront park and its extensions eastward into the city’s downtown.
Some Belltown activists want the former tunnel entrance to be a park, not a school or a park-cum-school. But at last the city-schools negotiators finally have a specific site and the outline of a deal.
You don’t have to live in the suburbs to spot native beavers building dams and raising kits inside the city. There are sightings along creeks and trailways in large parks, and this is the best time of the year to spot mothers and their young.
It may not be great functional design. It might not even make sense in the new context in which the park sits. But physical spaces are also places of history, and of memory. Sometimes they also get a voice.
The result is ingenious and well worth the mounting list of design awards and breathless reviews. The NBBJ design team, headed by principal Jose Sama, needed to wall off the substation while offering up favors—all within a single project budget.
The future of Pacific Place seems less certain, and more tied to the fate of overbuilt retail. Might there be some other ways to rejuvenate the building? Empty Pacific Place might be the perfect place to ease Seattle’s transition into the post-pandemic age—and help to save downtown Seattle once again.