Parks Activation Producing Welcoming, Fun Public Spaces

Over the last year, the addition of ping pong tables, food trucks, art installations and other amenities and activities have helped transform Occidental Square and Westlake Park into vibrant and inviting places for everyone to enjoy. The Downtown Seattle Association (DSA), MID and the City of Seattle have agreed on a long-term contract to keep DSA/MID in a leadership role in these two urban parks following a one-year pilot program.

Occidental Wave Sine kids webThis arrangement allowed DSA/MID to bring a wide range of activities and events to Occidental and Westlake. A mid-day coffee tasting event attracted hundreds of people to Occidental. Free fitness classes filled both parks with activity through the summer and daily live music provided a downtown Seattle soundtrack. Human foosball produced plenty of laughs, while art classes, tech workshops and kids activities provided free educational opportunities.

DSA/MID tracked a number of statistics over the past year to gauge the quantity and quality of the park programming. The new approach in these parks produced results:

  • More than 400,000 visitors were counted from June 2015 – April 2016
  • 82 percent of visitors found the parks to be clean and welcoming
  • 95 percent of park goers indicated they would return

The DSA and MID will work in partnership with Seattle Parks and Recreation, the Seattle Parks Foundation, Alliance for Pioneer Square, Friends of Waterfront Seattle and other neighborhood groups to apply similar treatments to Bell Street Park, Cascade Park, Freeway Park and Waterfront Park.

For more information on everything there is to do in Occidental and Westlake and a calendar of events, visit