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Park District Governing Board Passes 2023-2028 Financial Plan

On Tuesday, September 27, the City Council, acting as the Seattle Park District Board, passed the Seattle Park District 2023-2028 financial plan. The financial plan will invest $118M in 2023, $122M in 2024, $127M in 2025, $131M in 2026, $137M in 2027, and $143M in 2028 to keep parks clean, open, and accessible to all. The plan was passed following months of community and stakeholder engagement and takes important steps to improve safety, combat climate change, support youth, and advance equity.

Highlights include: 

  • Opening 12 new park sites totaling more than 10 acres.  
  • Making major community center renovations at Queen Anne, Lake City, Green Lake/Evans Pool and Loyal Heights. 
  • Making all 129 public restrooms available for year-round use by the end of 2028. 
  • Reestablishing a robust Park Ranger program, adding 26 Park Rangers (for a total of 28) to enhance safety and promote voluntary compliance of park rules. 
  • Adding a new staff team of 5 employees to respond quickly to graffiti and vandalism. 
  • Planting and establishing more than 600 additional trees in developed parks to increase urban tree canopy and mitigate heat islands and restoring funds to the Green Seattle Partnership. 
  • Decarbonizing at least an additional 6 community centers and other SPR facilities with a goal of having half our community centers carbon free by 2028 (pending additional funding), contributing to the One Seattle “resilience hub” strategy to combat growing impacts of climate change. 
  • Doubling Community Engagement Ambassador hours from 3,000 to 6,000 hours in up to 15 languages. 
  • More than doubling the size of the new Equity Grant Fund to support community-driven park improvement projects in under-resourced neighborhoods. 
  • Funding 20,000 hours of youth employment opportunities per year serving 80 youth. 
  • Creating two new Off Leash Areas (OLAs), and funding to plan for a third OLA.

“Seattle’s parks, playfields, and community centers are integral for healthy communities – they are places of growth, learning, play, and opportunity for everyone in our city,” said Mayor Harrell. “This level of investment is what is necessary to maintain, restore, and renovate our world class parks system, as we also advance efforts to drive equity and build community resilience to climate change. I want to thank Parks Board President and City Councilmember Andrew Lewis for his tireless work on this Parks District budget. Working together, this investment makes real our shared commitment for Seattle’s parks to be well-maintained, safe, and accessible for all residents to enjoy.”

“We are truly grateful to the taxpayers of Seattle for their continued support of our precious park system and beloved recreation facilities. I want to thank the community and our partners for their involvement and valuable feedback during the Park District budget planning process. The Park District has enabled us to make maintenance and community access a priority, and I am excited for the next six years ahead as we continue to work to further expand access to communities in need, provide reliable maintenance of parks and facilities, and improve the resiliency of our buildings and natural spaces,” said Christopher Williams, Acting Superintendent of Seattle Parks and Recreation.  

About the Seattle Park District:

Seattle voters approved the creation of the Park District in August 2014. The Seattle Park District is a sustainable funding source to repair, maintain, and restore basic services at the City’s parks, community centers, and regional attractions. The first six-year cycle of funding spanned from 2015-2020 and planning for Cycle 2 was delayed in 2020 due to the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, the City Council, acting as the Park District Board, passed annual budgets in 2021 and 2022.  More information here: Seattle Park District |