Friday, May 26, 2006

A Third Great Public Space

Each Friday, we've agreed to offer a new public space in downtown Tacoma for nomination as one of the ten great spaces we will collectively celebrate as we pursue the vision of a fully-activated downtown.

Our criteria for selecting the ten great spaces are taken from principles that the Project for Public Spaces has found in successful places all over the world:
  1. They are accessible;
  2. People are engaged in activities there;
  3. The space is comfortable and has a good image;
  4. It is a sociable place--one where people meet each other and take people when they come to visit.
To date, we have cited two public spaces in downtown Tacoma: Pacific Plaza (the site for our recent placemaking workshop) and Theater Square.

Today's addition to the list is Fireman's Park. Located north of 9th St. and east of 'A' just above the Schuster Parkway, this wedge of greenery offers an unobstructed vista of Commencement Bay and the Port of Tacoma. The Puyallup Tribe regarded the site as sacred, and the sun rises from the center of Mt. Rainier on the winter solstice. The present park was first laid out in 1894 immediately north of the city’s first brick fire station, and features a dramatic Alaskan native totem pole installed in 1903 and restored in 1976.

1 comment:

  1. Fireman's park actually does qualify as a successful public space as

    1) It is near a popular view of Tacoma.

    2) It has a trail running through it with ample foot traffic.

    3) Windows of businesses are nearly and look over the Park to keep an eye on the area. Cars park nearby as well allowing further monitoring of the property.

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