The Friends of Gas Works Park has been established to foster the understanding and appreciation of the Park. It is our goal to support the collection and translation of historical and educational information about the Park into an exciting and thought-provoking form which will integrate with and enhance the existing Park experience. The Friends of Gas Works Park is a community organization officially recognized by the City of Seattle for responsible stewardship of Gas Works Park
Our mission is twofold:
To celebrate our industrial past, the technology and the people behind it and give new life to the totemic artifacts, true landmarks of Seattle's past, and, as a component of the Park Master Plan, to utilize one of the generator towers for the installation of a camera obscura.
Information about becoming a FoGWP member is included further below.
Some photos from our archives:
Gas Works Park tells a story of Seattle and its people
Seattle is home to one of the few industrial reclamation parks in the world. Our own Gas Works Park is the sole survivor of 1400 gasification plants in the United States alone. With an international reputation as a prototype for industrial site conversions, Gas Works Park has received worldwide recognition, won numerous design and environmental awards, and attracts visitors from around the globe each year.
The remaining relics of the former Gas Plant serve as totemic artifacts; the last surviving members of an extinct species. They are real dinosaurs; the engineering of these structures is of a type, scale and complexity of detail which will never again be achieved.
Although selected as a park site by the Olmsted Brothers in 1903, the Seattle Light Company purchased the site and built a coal-based gas producing plant in 1906. In 1937, the coal conversion plant was replaced with oil-gas generators which remain today. Production ended in 1956 with the conversion to natural gas.
The old plant location was soon recognized as being unique and through the work of Seattle City Councilwoman, Myrtle Edwards and others, the idea of a park began. In 1962, the City started acquisition of the site from Washington Natural Gas Company.
In 1972, Richard Haag Associates, completed the Park Master Plan: "The plan is purposely under-designed; it represents a strong skeleton which can evolve in rhythm and rhyme with the new directions in life and play-styles." The last phase of Park construction was completed in 1978. For the past twenty years the natural processes have been at work neutralizing the soil. The Park is owned and operated by the City of Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation.
Support the Friends of Gas Works Park
As a Friend or Business Sponsor of the Friends of Gas Works Park, you will be supporting part of Seattle's legacy by helping to create a place of learning and discovery at Gas Works Park.
Friends of Gas Works Park: $100+ $50 $30; $15 Student; $10 (Under 18)
Could you help as a volunteer? Do you know any former Gas Plant workers?
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Friends of Gas Works Park P. O. box 95354 Seattle, Washington 98145 FoGWP is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) Washington state coporation.