Seattle Parks and Recreation and the United Indians of All Tribes excited about progress for the Northwest Native Canoe Center at Lake Union Park

Seattle Park and Recreation (SPR) and the United Indians of All Tribes (UIATF) are happy to announce the design of the Canoe Carving House, as part of the Northwest Native Canoe Center, is moving forward with the goal of being under construction in 2022. The community-initiated project will celebrate the canoe culture that is dominant among the Pacific Northwest coastal tribes and will be located on the west shore of Lake Union in Lake Union Park, 860 Terry Ave. N. The facility will have a green-roof and will provide space for an ongoing Native American canoe carving program, and storage for canoes that will be hand-launched into the lake during operating hours. Docents will also explain the Northwest Native American skills and beliefs used over generations in building canoes.

“This first phase of the Northwest Native Canoe Center (the Canoe Carving House) has been a dream of ours for many years,” said Mike Tulee, Executive Director of UIATF. “The facility fits directly into our mission and will provide educational and cultural opportunities that reconnect Indigenous people to their heritage and will strengthen their sense of belonging.”

The Northwest Native Canoe Center is part of the Lake Union Park Master Plan. SPR contributed funding for the project through the 2008 Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund and hired Jones & Jones Architects to design the project. UIATF secured the additional funding for the Carving Canoe House.

“First, I would like to acknowledge that this project is going to be built on the shore of Lake Union, the traditional lands and waters of the Duwamish people. The building will be a celebration of the Coast Salish canoe culture and remind people of our indigenous communities, past, present and future,” said Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent at Seattle Parks and Recreation.  “I want to thank United Indians of All Tribes for their great partnership and for creating an educational opportunity for all that reinforces the connection to the original inhabitants of this land. The Northwest Native Canoe Center incorporates Seattle Parks and Recreation’s values of equity, opportunity, access and sustainability. We are excited to be moving into the construction phase of this project.”

The entire center will comprise of the Canoe Carving House and the Welcome House. The Welcome House will provide educational interactive displays, a gift shop, a catering kitchen and a multi-use space for cultural events.  UIATF is launching fundraising efforts for the Welcome House portion of the project. Please visit United Indians of All Tribes Foundation’s website to contribute-Unitedindians.org. Once funding is secured SPR and UIATF will move forward with the second phase of the Center. 

For more information, please visit http://www.seattle.gov/parks/about-us/current-projects/northwest-native-canoe-center or contact David Graves at David.Graves@seattle.gov.