Colman Park

Colman Park is located in the Mount Baker neighborhood at 1800 Lake Washington Blvd S, 98144. It is 24.3 acres.

Colman Park, as with Frink Park and Leschi Park, is located within a steeply sloped area referred to in Olmsted’s 1903 report as the “Rainier Heights Landslide Section.” In his 1903 report, John Charles proposed an ambitious undertaking to acquire this entire length of steep slope for park purposes, warning of the land’s unsuitability for subdivision development: “Houses will probably continue to be moved gradually on to adjoining land owned by someone else, and there will be no end to the trouble, expense and inconvenience due to the continuation of the slide if it is allowed to become occupied by houses. . . . On the other hand, the movement of the land would be of small consequence if the ground is turned into a public park.” This area is generally east of 31st/32nd Ave and extends approximately from Plum Street on the south end to Yesler Way to the north. Olmsted also proposed a “crestline parkway” that would run along the top of this slope and provide occasional views to Lake Washington and mountains beyond.  This ambitious plan was never realized, but selected parcels within this area were either donated to or purchased by the city for parkland.

The ravine in Colman Park provides a winding route for Lake Washington Boulevard to ascend the hillside from the lakeshore as it heads north to Frink Park. Four bridges allow pedestrians to move separately from the vehicles. Acquired in 1907 from Seattle’s first municipal water company, Colman Park still includes the original pump intake pipe from the lake. Located at the north edge of Seattle’s Mount Baker neighborhood, this forested hillside park features paths, community gardens, forest and lawns. Views from this park epitomize the Olmsted goal “to secure and preserve for the use of the people as much as possible of these advantages of water and mountain views and of woodlands.”

John Charles Olmsted’s preliminary plan for the park in 1910 laid out routes for paths and included designs for plantings that featured forested areas and open spaces.

News About Colman Park

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