FOLLOWUP: New timeline for Lincoln Park’s long-closed South Play Area

(WSB photo, July 2017)

Next month will mark five years since Lincoln Park‘s south play structure was closed for safety concerns after deterioration was found in its wooden components. Over those ensuing years, Seattle Parks has repeatedly revised the timeline for replacing it. And now there’s a brand-new update: Parks is bundling this project with the play-equipment replacement at Westcrest Park, and says, “Both projects will be bid together for construction by the same contractor. We anticipate the bid advertisement in summer 2022, with construction starting in fall 2022.” (That’s a delay for the Westcrest Park project too, previously expected to happen this summer – it was closed a year ago.)

20 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: New timeline for Lincoln Park's long-closed South Play Area"

  • Jort June 7, 2022 (3:32 pm)

    You know, there are regular accusations of intentional malice and outright FRAUD from commentators on this very fine blog regarding transit and bike lane projects stemming from what appears to be a nearly religious belief that non-automobile transportation is a fundamentally illegitimate use of taxpayer dollars. You know, the usual. But I have found, over the years in Seattle, that the Parks Department seems to be the most actually inept agency, especially over weird rule-making, basic maintenance and tiny projects like this. Perhaps this is an unpopular opinion, and, sure, maybe I’m missing something here. Are they not well-funded? What kinds of actual barriers are standing in the way of, you know, replacing playground equipment? Five years? Really? The land-banked park in the Junction? The Westcrest delays?   The multi-year Alki bathroom that cost as much as a new 3 bedroom home? Honestly, I’m wondering: what is the issue with Parks and what needs to be fixed?  Am I the only one that sees this?

    • SUE L. June 7, 2022 (6:19 pm)


      • Kyle June 7, 2022 (8:11 pm)

        Sadly, I agree Parks seems to be the most inept city agency I’ve dealt with too.

      • jortandsuefan June 8, 2022 (1:37 pm)


    • Odd son June 7, 2022 (8:40 pm)

      I agree. I have many examples over the last 10 years of varying  degrees of severity.

    • Sarge June 7, 2022 (9:02 pm)

      Absolutely 100% agree! For a wealthy city Seattle’s parks are just plain thought/suspicion, are they so occupied by other maintenance and safety issues related to vandalism, encampment, etc that there’s no bandwidth left for improvements/‘optional’ maintenance ? Just can’t juggle it all? Neglected because other depts get all the attention? I seem to also recall some vacancies in the leadership. 

  • 1994 June 7, 2022 (8:15 pm)

    In 2014, Seattle voters approved the Seattle Park District providing Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) with funds to increase investment in maintenance, recreation affordability,  park development, and supporting community programs.” From the SPD web site on funding….Property taxes are dedicated to the SPD. The playground at Lincoln Park is not a minor issue and should have been promptly repaired or replaced to be put back into use for the children.  Management issues? 

  • onion June 7, 2022 (8:46 pm)

    I don’t have kids or grandkids here, but this playground closure really pisses me off. Five years???!!!

  • WS PARENT June 7, 2022 (9:35 pm)

    Is this the park closest to the ferry? Wow. That’s a really sad looking area. What a shame kids can’t gather and play there anymore 

  • Luke June 8, 2022 (5:43 am)

    I walk by this area at least once a week with my toddler. Last week as we walked by she said “playground closed. Playground sad.” 😢 

  • Tim Z June 8, 2022 (10:41 am)

    The playground closure is yet another mystery. Still don’t understand why Parks replaced the handles on the rings from a torus to a handle.  They did manage to get the heights wrong.  

  • Auntie June 8, 2022 (10:57 am)

    Any time I have contacted Parks about an issue, I get a vague “we’re aware of the problem, but don’t have the personnel to deal with everything right now” answer. Maybe they don’t have adequate staffing because they don’t treat their employees fairly. Seven Black women, alleging discrimination during their careers with Seattle Parks Department, file lawsuit | The Seattle Times

  • Sarchka June 8, 2022 (11:10 am)

    Seems ripe for one of those Seattle Times ‘Watchdog’ articles.  Luckily we have our WSB ‘Watchdog’!

    • WSB June 8, 2022 (12:51 pm)

      What it needs is a whole bunch of PDRs and I’m working on that.

      • Sarchka June 8, 2022 (2:40 pm)


  • ST June 8, 2022 (1:02 pm)

    There is also the Hiawatha playground project that is way behind schedule.  I wonder if it is still even going to happen?  I’ve reached out to Seattle Parks for an update and have not received a response.  

    • WSB June 8, 2022 (2:31 pm)

      Project page’s April update says they got the building permit in March and expected construction in “summer.” Will follow up.

  • snowskier June 8, 2022 (2:23 pm)

    5 years?  So basically, the last little kids to play on the old structure will be too told to use the new one if and when it is opened.  I’ve seen school PTAs raise money and install new equipment within a matter of months.  Seems that Seattle Parks has really embraced that ‘can’t do attitude’/

  • Jim P. June 8, 2022 (3:51 pm)

    Closed five years and only now going out for bids, so another couple of years?This just makes paying my property taxes ever so much more joyful.  What exactly took them this long just to get to bidding? No one in Parks ever had stuff break before?

Sorry, comment time is over.