Seattle Center News
Artists-at-Play Planning Process
A design and construction team has been announced for a children's play area at Seattle Center.
Coming to Seattle Center in 2015
Initial planning work on a new partnership project began in late 2012 to enliven Next 50 Plaza with an artist(s)-created children's play area. After meetings earlier in 2013 to determine direction and advisory group membership, a partnership of Center Art LLC, Seattle Center and Seattle Center Foundation convened the nine-member advisory group to help develop a project scope and artist/designer selection guidelines for an artful play space to be located on the former North Fun Forest site at Seattle Center.
On August 6, 2013 the partnership announced a call for an experienced and imaginative Pacific Northwest artist/design team to provide design and fabrication services for the Artists at Play project. The deadline for the call was in early September. A selection panel compromised of members of the greater community and Seattle Center reviewed the submissions and selected an artist team for the project.
The team, comprised of celebrated Northwest artists Trimpin and Judith Caldwell, in partnership with Site Workshop and Highwire, will transform the asphalt plaza between Seattle Center Armory and EMP Museum into a free, artistically-inspired play area for kids of all ages (see link below for conceptual renderings and team resumes).
The project team is undertaking a robust community engagement process to gather input and feedback from local kids so that the play area truly reflects the community's imagination and creative spirit. The project's partners invited children and adults alike to join team members in a Kick-Off Community Design Presentation and Workshop on March 1. Following additional community workshops scheduled around the city in spring 2014 to collect a diverse range of ideas, the team invited the public back for a design update open house on May 31.
The drawing above is the result of the public engagement. Project construction began in early December 2014, with an anticipated completion in the spring of 2015.
The play area will help reinvent and enliven up to a three-acre area within the former Fun Forest North site at Seattle Center. Private funding for the project is provided by Center Art LLC, as a provision of its lease for the Chihuly Garden and Glass Museum. The total project design and construction budget is $800,000.