The International District as a whole has the lowest amount of green space per capita ratio compared to other neighborhoods and this was clearly seen in Little Saigon. There was no safe green space where nearby residents and employee could enjoy. There had been on-going concern for years but it was not till the Seattle Parks and Recreation department started to recognize that Little Saigon was a key investment area for the Parks and Green Spaces levy. With this opportunity to acquire a piece of land for the development of a park, community members came together to push this project forward. From there, Friends of Little Saigon was formed, with a vision to promote, enhance, and showcase the cultural and economic vitality of Seattle’s Little Saigon.
To gain interest from the community and envision what the possibilities for a park would look like, FLS began to work with the University of Washington, Landscape Architecture student studio. In this studio, students worked with staff from the SCIDpda, Seattle Parks Department and community stakeholders to identify sites for park acquisition in the Little Saigon. A new neighborhood park will be an enormous asset to the community, providing much-needed green space and park in an area with potential for growth and denser development. The design of the park will provide an opportunity for the community to articulate its identity and to participate in a public process that will have an impact on the quality of life. The Neighborhood Design Studio assisted the local community in identifying suitable sites for park acquisition, provided initial concept design to envision the programmatic possibilities and potential of the different sites.
FLS has continued to work with the Seattle Parks Department in acquiring a piece of land in the neighborhood. Currently, the parks department is looking into possible properties and will acquire land by the beginning of 2012.
Check out what the UW, LA studio did for conceptual designs of the Little Saigon Park.
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