Current project status and timeline
- Contractor is on board
- Construction began on May 9, 2022
- Project completion is projected for January 2023
- The project completion date depends on the delivery and installation of several park improvements.
- The remaining improvements to be delivered and installed include:
- Swingset for ages 2-5
- 4 new basketball hoops and hockey goals at cross court
- 4 on-demand lights for basketball court
- The project improvements include updates to the north and south end of Skyway Park:
- North end:
- Built new playground and installed new play equipment
- Installed mini turf soccer arena
- Installed paved pathway
- Added security lighting along new pathway
- Improved ADA access from parking lot to park
- Added 2 parking spaces
- Rehabilitated 1 softball field (field #2)
- Replaced chain-link fencing between parking lot and park with wooden post and rail fencing
- South end:
Upgraded basketball court with 2 new hoops at full court
Repaired existing paved pathway
Improved ADA access from parking lot to park
Added security lighting
Removed existing playground area (new playground to be built in north end) and rehabilitated grass
Installed new 6-foot chain-link fencing along park boundary connecting existing chain-link fencing sections
- North end:
- During construction, the restrooms will be closed, but portable restrooms will be available. After hearing feedback regarding restroom facilities from the community at the December 2021 public meeting, the timeline for installation of new Portland Loos has been moved up and will be occurring in 2023
- Artwork from a local artist will be included on the basketball hoop/hockey goals in partnership with the Kraken
- For renderings of what the new construction will look like, please refer to this presentation
What is going on with the restrooms at Skyway Park?
The existing restrooms at Skyway have been closed due to safety issues. Though there are portable restroom facilities available, based on feedback from community members at the December 2021 public meeting, the Parks team worked to move the original construction timeline for installing new Portland Loos from 2024 to 2023. Given the success of this type of restroom at other parks where restrooms can become unsafe at night, such as Steve Cox Memorial Park, the Portland Loos were selected as the best option for Skyway Park to avoid safety concerns around restrooms that have long been commented upon by park visitors and community members.
- A few factors contribute to 2023 being the earliest the Portland Loos could be installed:
- The lead time for the correct waiver required to install the Portland Loos is 6 months
- Order lead times for the Portland Loos is 8+ months
- Portland Loos require water, sewer, and electrical utility connections, which don’t currently exist in the north end of the park. The Parks team is currently working with Seattle City Light to coordinate the addition of electricity to prepare the park for a successful installation
Is there anything happening with the drainage issues in the south field?
The landscape of Skyway Park is extremely challenging due to it being composed of 3 wetlands and a filled pond and stream. This means the groundwater table is exceptionally high, which creates the drainage issues. In addition to the challenging hydrology, when King County Parks evaluated several potential solutions for either installing additional drainage options (French drains, etc.), or converting this area into a synthetic field, both options were unfortunately found unfeasible due to:
- Development restrictions due to protections on existing stream and wetland buffers
- Strict stormwater management requirements due to high groundwater table
- No space to add additional parking that would be required by code
- Code that considers installation of drainage changing a field from a pervious to an impervious surface
Because of the landscape complexities and restrictions on development, there are currently no plans for the south field.
Why have there been changes to the timeline for the improvements?
This project has taken longer than originally planned to be constructed for several reasons:
1. The project received a federal grant, which required additional environmental studies and additional time during development of the construction contract to incorporate all the federal terms and conditions.
2. The stream and wetland buffers that extend into the park restricted some of the original development ideas. The design had to be adjusted several times to meet the requirements for developing within the stream and wetland buffers.
3. The high groundwater table made it challenging to design a facility that met both King County stormwater management code requirements and functioned the way envisioned for the community. Parks ultimately had to petition for a variance from the stormwater code in order to get the final design approved.
4. As a result of the project timeline being extended due to the issues described above, the design consultant’s contract expired, so Parks had to procure an additional contract, which further delayed completion of the final design.
5. Skyway Water and Sewer District was conducting a project in 2020, so Parks waited to seek bids for a construction contract until their project had wrapped up.
6. Upon execution of the construction contract in February 2022, widespread supply chain issues resulted in the Contractor informing us that material lead times were very long and that materials required to begin the project wouldn’t be available until May 2022.
We will be creating a landing page with current project timeline, updates, and FAQ for Skyway Park. This will be coming soon, and we will share it out with Skyway Coalition, West Hill Community Association, King County Local Services, King County Parks project managers working on projects in Skyway, and sharing it on our social media pages. Stay tuned!
Is there a plan for additional lighting at Skyway Park?
13 solar lights will be added along the existing and new pathways at Skyway
Parks also has just received a grant to fund a new project to add solar lighting in several parks. We’re in the process of identifying which parks, and priority is being given to south King County parks, one of which is Skyway Park. If Skyway Park is selected, additional lighting is projected to be installed in mid- to late- 2023.
How has public feedback been incorporated into this project?
The project team started meeting with the community beginning in 2015. Proposed upgrades to Skyway Park were drawn from comments from the community. King County Parks staff worked with community organizations to gather feedback about this project and to solicit additional community feedback, including through a:
- CSA meeting in 2015
- Community park tour in 2017
- Coordination with Skyway Solutions throughout 2017
- Meetings with West Hill Community Association in 2017 and 2019
- Meeting with Skyway Coalition in November 2021
- Public meeting in December 2021
- Ongoing involvement of the West Hill Community Association and the Skyway Coalition
What is going on with the community garden project on 75th and Renton Ave, aka “the pizza slice”?
King County Parks has been conducting meetings with community planning committees and Nurturing Roots on updates to the existing Skyway Community garden plan at the “pizza slice” at Renton Ave and 75th St. Nurturing Roots is assisting King County Parks in finishing the design work on the community garden and the new acquisition across the street, conducting community meetings, and renewing the permits which have expired from the original project. Where applicable, Parks will work with the project managers managing the Skyway Park update to identify opportunities to dovetail with planning already underway.
King County Parks hosted a virtual information session on Dec 7, 2021 to provide an update about the project and other happenings in the park.
This project will include the following elements:
- enhancing and expanding the play area (north section)
- adding a pre-fabricated modular outdoor mini soccer arena (north section)
- adding on-demand lighting to the sports court (south section)
- adding a new paved, ADA accessible pathway (north section)
- repairing existing pathway
- adding parking spaces
- enhancing baseball diamond (north section)
- adding security lighting along pathway
- upgrading fencing
The following documentation is available for this project:
Budget: $2.92 million
Project Manager: Mary Lear