Beacon Hill Playground

Beacon Hill Playground is located in the Beacon Hill neighborhood at 1902 13th Ave S, 98119. It is 3 acres.

In 1903, when Olmsted made his first visit to Seattle, a small park already existed on this site. Known as “Beacon Park” and originally only half an acre large, Olmsted recommended that, as “more can be afforded, a formal design for paths and shrub beds and flower beds would be most appropriate. A fountain or statue may be added when opportunity serves.”

The north half of the site was acquired in 1909. The south half of the current playfield site had been a waterworks, the Spring Hill Water Company, from 1881 to 1907. Its reservoir was served by a pump station on Lake Washington at Colman Park. Acquired by Parks in 1907, the pump station was abandoned in 1912 and the site eventually converted to a playfield in 1926. Today the park features a wading pool, playcourts and playfields, and a children’s playground.

In their 1908 report, the Olmsted Brothers recommended development of another playfield, which they called “Beacon Hill Playfield,” at a location much further south and in a newly annexed area of Seattle. That playfield would have been by the southwest corner of Beacon Ave. and Myrtle Street, catty-corner to where Van Asselt Park is today, in the New Holly neighborhood.

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