Hong and I met up with Kelly Davidson (Parks coordinator for this project), Craig Skipton (consultant on this project from Mithun) and Casey Hildreth (our Seattle Dept. of Transportation point person for possible street vacations) earlier this week to talk about how the John and Summit project has progressed over the last few months. Here's the exciting news:
* According to Casey Hildreth of SDOT, there are many different ways that we can improve and pedestrianize John St. in order to better incorporate it into the park. Some possibilities include roadway narrowing/closure, parking removal, and the installation of a landscape strip for use as further gardening space.
Any work on John St. would need to be a second stage of the development for the park - this WILL NOT be covered by the planning or budget that Parks has currently for John and Summit. However, it is still an excellent opportunity to pursue in the next year. If anyone is interested on working on this, please email Unpaving Paradise at email@example.com.
* John and Summit park is at 95% design, and will go through the Parks Dept. 95% design review very soon. Once that's finished, Mithun will be able to complete the design for the park and p-patch, and then the project will be ready go out to bid. The John and Summit project will likely go out to bid in January or February 2010, and groundbreaking is anticipated for March.
* One of the final design details that was presented to us was the addition of a recycled steel border around the P-Patch area to delineate it from the lawn and landscaping areas - up until now the construction of any bed borders would be left up to the community. This border would be included if the John and Summit project comes in under bid, which is a distinct possibility since the bad economy makes bidding a lot more competitive on good sized projects like this one. The use of recycled steel is a good sustainable and aesthetic choice: it is a good reuse of a long lasting material and it matches the steel support walls already in the design along John St.
I don't know about you, but now I'm certainly looking forward to March!
~ Jen Power
Chair, Unpaving Paradise
Capitol Hill Community Council