Envisioning the Future of Titlow Park
Titlow Park Update
October 5, 2017
You may notice ribbons tied around some of the park’s trees.
Don’t worry—they don’t mark trees for cutting. Instead, they’re part of a survey of trees, utilities, buildings and more park features. The flags are temporary and will be removed in the next few weeks.
We’re conducting the survey to prepare for a public visioning process that will focus on Titlow Park’s natural areas and shoreline such as Hidden Beach. We anticipate starting this public process early next year.
The visioning process includes a “Master Plan Update” which will include a public discussion regarding the future use of the former TOA Site.
- Join Metro Parks and help us advance the vision for the park's natural areas and waterfront promenade.
- Public meetings, workshops and other details will be coming to Titlow Park.
In the meantime, Metro Parks has posted warning signs near the former boat launch as a precaution as we assess the area.
This year’s visioning process is the next step after the 2010 master plan and will focus on the park’s natural areas and waterfront promenade. Metro Parks has been working with the South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group to restore shoreline, so you also may see fencing in the area to protect plants taking root.
Tom Dargan, project manager
Past Projects at Titlow
- Kay's house removal and shoreline restoration Read more >
- Titlow Lagoon Design and Phase 1
Provide matching funds for lagoon restoration in accordance with partnering agencies. View project status >
- Titlow/Hidden Beach Improvements
Hidden Beach and natural area trail/path/beach access upgrades. Landscaping enhancements, natural area restoration, demolition of shelter and old restroom at Hidden Beach. Utility modifications at former TOA facility. Remove or perform bridge retrofits to TOA Railroad bridge. View project status >
2014 Trail & Way Finding Signage - Trailheads will be improved and marked and way finding signage will be added to select main trails. The trailhead and way finding sign package will be based on the design for trail signage that has been developed for MPT's Natural Areas. Trail improvements, interpretive signage and other site furniture may be included in this project. Work is being funded by the Parks Improvement Bond Measure, approved by the citizens of Tacoma in November of 2005 Dept. of
Ecology Soil Remediation Program - 2013
Metro Parks is negotiating an inter-agency agreement with Ecology that generally covers the work to be accomplished and defines roles and responsibilities for each agency. Most of the work at Titlow is directly behind the Lodge. The contractor will be using the gravel parking by the garage as the access point to the remediation site. Titlow Lodge has been rented every weekend in September/October. Cleanup also includes a small area near Kay's house.
Project Status 12/13/13: DOE soil remediation is complete.
Project Manager: Department of Ecology (also paying for all of the work)
Metro Parks Project Administrator: Roger Stanton; (253) 305-1082
Removal of Titlow Pool - 2013
On September 24, 2012, Board members passed a resolution authorizing a project budget to move forward with the demolition of Titlow Pool. The demolition project leaves the site with basic accessible pathways, irrigated turf and code-required surface water improvements.
08/08/13: Substantial Completion is expected June 5. Lawn is fenced to let seed grow.
Demolition: STETZ Construction
Playground/Sprayground Project - 2012
Design was done by Site Workshop. Construction was done by Nordic Construction.
North Lagoon Trail Enhancement & Habitat Restoration - 2011
This project restored 3.5 acres of degraded native vegetation surrounding the North Lagoon (invasive plants like Himalayan blackberry, ivy and other non-native species were removed and the area planted with appropriate native plants), enhanced the existing 2150 feet of loop trail around the lagoon, and added interpretive signage describing the pocket estuary and the importance of this habitat. As resources allow, habitat restoration of an additional 7.5 acres between the new playground/sprayground and the Meadow will occur.
- Work was done by Washington Conservation Corp crews
- Titlow Park Mitigation & Enhancement Report & Plan - August 2010 by AHBL
- Titlow Park is located within the Habitat Corridors established in Tacoma through the Open Space Habitat & Recreation Plan.
- Titlow was also identified as needing restoration by the Green Tacoma Partnership's Restoration Action Plan.
Lodge Improvements - June 18, 2011
Work included new roof, window restoration, west veranda construction, new hardwood flooring, new lighting, new exterior doors and stairs, and painting inside and out. The last major renovation work was done in 1992 and included structural, mechanical and electrical upgrades. The Lodge was originally built as the Hotel Hesperides in 1911.
- Design: BOE Architects
- Construction: Danneko Construction
Burlington Northern Railroad Safety Fence - 2010
Safety fencing was installed on Burlington Northern property along the south access between the walkway/driveway and the railroad tracks to protect the public from the active rail line. MPT owns the fence and is responsible for the M&O. Our original agreement with Burlington Northern was made in 1978.
Reforestation - 2010
Poplar trees expend so much of their energy on growth that they have little left for defenses. As a result, poplars commonly rot and break and drop branches. In recent years, storms have severely damaged and even knocked down these trees. Since these trees were located next to arterial streets, MPT proactively removed 11 Lombardy poplars to prevent vehicular damage or injuries to park visitors. New street trees to replace the poplars on 6th Avenue were planted summer 2012. The new trees are katsuras, which don’t have showy flowers, but they do have very nice fall color, and they are tolerant of the winter-wet soil we have at Titlow Park. The katsura trees should eventually reach 60 or more feet tall, but much more slowly than the poplars. North Lagoon
Trail Enhancement & Habitat Restoration - 2010
Restoration work completed by People for Puget Sound included removal of invasive weeds like blackberry, English ivy and Scot's broom and installation of 132 native plants along the upper lagoon shoreline (8 Douglas Fir, 30 Oceanspray, 29 Snowberry, 11 Nootka Rose, 6 Red Alder, 38 Coastal Strawberry, 1 Pacific Crabapple and 9 Red Osler Dogwood). Stewardship enhancements of the North Lagoon wetlands improve the habitat value, increase recreational opportunities and promote biodiversity and healthy function of water filtering capacity. Titlow is considered a significant site for salmon habitat recovery. It is a key migration corridor providing foraging and resting habitat for fish.
Master Plan - 2010
Metro Parks staff, together with a Steering Committee made up of representatives of public agencies, environmental groups, and Titlow Park neighbors worked with the landscape architects from Siteworkshop throughout 2009 to develop a master plan for Titlow Park. Three public meetings were held to obtain input, and the Master Plan was adopted by the Park Board in January of 2010. The Master Plan has been used to guide MPT efforts at implementing various improvements at the Park including the Lodge Improvements, Playground/Sprayground, Trails, Reforestation, and ongoing work on fish passage and Lagoon Restoration.
- View the Master Plan for Titlow Park.
Feasibility Study for Titlow Lagoon Restoration & Fish Passage - 2010
Concurrent with Metro Parks' preparation of the Titlow Park Master Plan, People for Puget Sound and the South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group sponsored a technical feasibility study of the potential for restoration of Titlow Lagoon as fish habitat. The resulting report was prepared by Parametrix and completed in January of 2010 as a technical appendix to the Master Plan.
- Introduction, Master Planning and Selected Concepts for Titlow Park
- Marine Habitat Restoration
- Fish Passage Concepts, Flood Potential Analysis & References
Artificial Reef - 2008
Staff helped Bellarmine students put together an RCO grant proposal to provide enhancements to the Titlow dive site with construction of an artificial reef.
Storm Sewer System - 2006
The Tacoma City Council approved more than $985,000 to upgrade the storm sewer system to alleviate flooding on Titlow Road and Highway 16. At the same time, the 230-foot creek was "daylighted" (exposed instead of running in an underground tube or pipe) and transformed into a little meandering creek with a rocky bottom after it crosses under Sixth Avenue. It now curves around the east side of the tennis courts and flows into Titlow lagoon. Landscaping and a footbridge were added.