In 2006, what was once the Colman School parking lot on the corner of 25th and S Massachusetts Street was turned into a simple grassy field with a tall wall hiding it from the community. Now, nine years later, the project to renovate the park and dedicate it to Jimi Hendrix has begun.
What once was hidden will become a source of pride among the neighborhoods that surround the park according to Kim Baldwin, Seattle Parks project manager.
In fact, one of the main focuses of this project is “connection to the community.” Baldwin expects it to become a gathering place for people to “celebrate the neighborhood.”
The park’s rock and roll design is inspired by Hendrix, who grew up near the area. For example, the park’s entrance and main path will be alongside a long guitar-like structure. The Jimi Hendrix Park Foundation also hopes to host music events at the park as well as cultural events and activities for the community. They hope to, through the park, “beautify Seattle, motivate youth and others to achieve in music and art, and strengthen the cultural pulse of the Emerald City,” according to the group’s website.
The renovations are already underway with construction starting earlier this spring. April marked the beginning of underground utility work, and above-ground demolition will be the next step.
As construction begins, the Jimi Hendrix Park Foundation continues working towards its fundraising goal of $1.5 million. The first stage of construction will not include the wave wall feature and canopy structure — future stages of construction will follow. Without issues in construction or funds, the park is planned to open with its first wave of features in September 2015.
You can learn more and support the park effort at jimihendrixparkfoundation.org.