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If you love Point Defiance Park, visit our open house on Feb. 10

January 16, 2018

Metro Parks will ask for input on Owen Beach, give updates on improvements and show how you can get involved through summer camps, volunteer opportunities and more

A new aquarium, new recreation areas, a connection to Ruston Way, a roundabout … a lot of improvements are coming to Point Defiance Park. There are so many projects underway this year that Metro Parks wants to update park visitors face-to-face.

A free open house from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 10, in the park’s new Environmental Learning Center next to Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium is your chance to learn more and ask questions.

Owen Beach improvements will be one of the highlights. Staff will present ideas and ask attendees to give input (an online survey will be posted to for those who can’t attend.) Metro Parks staff also will take public comments on the Point Defiance Park Parking and Circulation Plan before the plan moves forward for adoption and a final design phase.

“Metro Parks hopes that having the open house on a Saturday will be convenient timing for citizens,” said Park Board President Andrea Smith. “Many of our public meetings take place on weeknights, but we know they sometimes introduce schedule conflicts and child-care issues. You can bring your whole family to this open house, and enjoy the park afterward.”

Other topics include:

  • The Zoo’s new Pacific Seas Aquarium
  • Wilson Way, the bicycle-pedestrian bridge that will link the park’s trails to Ruston Way
  • A new multiuse parking area close to the boat launches
  • Building an 11-acre recreation area on top of the park’s breakwater peninsula
  • The Point Defiance roundabout project
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Summer camps

The day’s full schedule will be posted to and to Facebook close to the event.

How to get to the Environmental Learning Center

By the time of the event, construction of the new traffic roundabout at the park’s Pearl Street entrance may be underway. The park’s Mildred Street entrance will be the easiest route to the Zoo and Environmental Learning Center (reach it from Pearl Street by turning west onto North 51st Street and following the curve at the street’s end). The Pearl Street entrance will remain open, however; drivers should follow the detour signs. All of the park’s attractions are open to the public throughout the roundabout construction period.

Park at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium and walk toward the Zoo’s entrance. The Environmental Learning Center entrance is just left of the Zoo’s main gate.


Point Defiance Park open house

  • What: Learn more about progress of ongoing improvements to Point Defiance Park
  • When: Beginning 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 10
  • Where: Environmental Learning Center, next to Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium’s entrance (there is no admission charge to enter the center)
  • Parking: Park at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium and head toward the Zoo’s entrance. The Environmental Learning Center entrance is just left of the Zoo’s main gate.
  • Cost: Free

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