It’s hard to imagine Seattle without Discovery Park. It represents the largest city park and largest open space in a large, booming city becoming more dense by the week. There is no realistic prospect of ever adding a space of similar size inside the city should this one be whittled away by development.
The Capehart Forest restoration project represents one of the largest and most exciting additions to Discovery Parks open space in recent memory. Since the early 60’s the 30-acre site has been filled with over 60 prefabricated military homes and owned by the Navy. With its security fencing, no-trespassing signs, and very central location, it represented a significant detraction from the Park as a place to enjoy the out of doors.
In the very center of the park at the top of its highest and most scenic hill is a 100 foot tall FAA radar dome which dominates the landscape in all directions and lies within the Fort Lawton Historic District. This District is one of the most iconic places in the Park with wide open spaces and unparalleled views.
Under a Settlement Agreement, King County transmitted $5.3 million to the City of Seattle. This money plus all interest was held in a sub-fund specifically for Discovery Park. The expenditure of that $5.3 million plus interest, was reviewed quarterly by a Citizens Oversight Committee made up of 1 representative from each of 7 specific organizations including Friends of Discovery Park.