CHS Pics | A ‘community lunch’ in Freeway Park

No matter how you count them, there are more and more people living unsheltered in Seattle’s core. Friday, one of the group’s trying to help expanded its work to a new location.

Operation Sack Lunch partnered with the Freeway Park Association and Compass Housing Alliance to offer free hot meals in the greenspace between downtown, First Hill, and Capitol Hill Friday afternoon.

The nonprofit OSL has been providing nutritional meals since 1989 and is an advocate for “an equitable food system.”

In addition to the food, Capitol Hill regular Pasquale provided some music on the chilly January day. OSL was also accepting donations for donations to help it acquire a new Mobile Meal Kitchen vehicle.

CHS Pics | A day of planting in Freeway Park

(Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Freeway Park, the public space connecting Capitol Hill to downtown Seattle and the first piece of what could eventually be a more complete lidding of I-5, will have a little more color come spring thanks to a day of community work this fall.

The Freeway Park Association hosted a fall planting day in Seneca Plaza over the weekend.

“It’s like this little temporary engagement that is going to create a burst of color and activity in the springtime,” executive director Riisa Conklin said. Continue reading

Celebrating 40 years of Seattle’s first I-5 lid: Happy birthday, Freeway Park

Sunnier days in the '70s in Freeway Park (Image: City of Seattle)

Sunnier days in the ’70s in Freeway Park (Image: City of Seattle)

The group determined to reclaim and revive the public asset is celebrating Jim Ellis Freeway Park’s 40-year history of bridging the gap and the interstate between Capitol Hill, First Hill, and downtown Seattle.

The park was founded on July 4, 1976, after years of Seattle civic leader Jim Ellis pushing for a park over I-5 to reclaim some of the space taken up by the interstate for community use. This weekend, the Freeway Park Association will celebrate the 40-year anniversary of the park’s opening and the group’s efforts to reclaim the space from decades of neglect.

“Freeway Park was the first park to lid over a freeway to reconnect communities that had been cut by that highway,” said Freeway Park Association’s Riisa Conklin. Conklin said the green-covered 5.2-acre park is essentially a “fertilizer box” situated over the highway.

The park is celebrating its 40th on Sunday, July 3 from 11:30 AM to 2 PM. The festivities will include a bluegrass band, free kettle corn, face painting, and a community kite painting project. All parts of the celebration are free and open to the public. A blues and jazz concert follows starting at 2 PM. Continue reading