The capehart Parcel was purchased by the City from the Navy for $11.1 million. The money came from a combination of state and county grants as well as proceeds from the sale of surplus City property.
The Navy decided to sell the property so as to relocate its military personnel closer to their Everett Base.
The City initially took possession of the eastern portion of the parcel, and removed the children's play structures, the NEX Mini-Mart, and the Maintenance Building 750 that were located there.
As of January 2010 the tenants had vacated the houses. In May, abatement of the houses began. In July the houses were demolished and the rubble removed. The City will be responsible for removing the remaining infrastructure (utilities, roads, foundations) once acquisition of the property is completed.
On July 21, 2010 Forest City advised the City that they were ready for a site inspection. Once that was approved, the Navy conveyed the property to Forest City PNW Military Communities, LLC who then conveyed it to the City of Seattle. This occured on October 20, 2010 and the City now owns the entire site.
The City chose a Consulting Firm, ESA Adolfson, to design the restoration of the site. They presented several design options, and a public meeting was held on November 10, 2010 to present these options. See the link below to the City webpage for details and Notes from the meeting.
8/16/11 After many months of discussion, design review, plan revisions, and finally acceptance of construction documents, the Capehart Restoration Project went out to bid, with a deadline of August 24, 2011.
9/16/11 The winning bid for the Discovery Park Capehart Restoration Project was submitted by AGR Contracting Inc., a local contractor with a history of public works and restoration projects. They have received a notice to proceed by Parks, and work will begin immediately.
October 2011 - the Consulting Firm ESA Adolfson was let go as they were not meeting expectations. Approximately $40,000 will be saved and will be used to purchase more plants for the site.
The Contractor AGR installed security and erosion control measures, demolished the hard surfaces and exported it to recycle.
Installation of new plants began mid-November. The project was scheduled to be completed by December 2011, but work continued into early 2012. A large section of the planting was done incorrectly - the trees were placed too close together - however the Park Department did not require the Contractor to correct their mistake :( :( :(
Additionally, approximately 4,000 too many trees were purchased. At the insistence of Friends of Discovery Park, these trees were planted elsewhere in Discovery Park (Parks wanted to send them to Magnuson Park.)
Plant establishment will be carried out over the next couple of years. The Contractor guarantees warranty and establishment through 2012 i.e. they will water the plants and supposedly replace any that die.
Illinois Ave was left paved where it passes through the Capehart site, however we have been "promised" it will be removed in the future. Also, a "spur" road with bollards was incorrectly created at the original entrance off of Discovery Park Blvd (Utah Ave) - this also will need to be removed in the future.
Eventually the entire site will be restored to native habitat. The Seattle Parks and Green Spaces levy which was approved by the voters in 2008, had $1 million ear-maked for Capehart Restoration. An additional $600,000 came from the West Point Settlement Agreement Fund.
January 2013 - The Contract with AGR ends on March 13, 2013. We have asked that they not be paid until they replace the plants that have died - which is part of their Contract. However to date, DPR has not enforced other conditions of the Contract e.g. planting on 10 foot centers, but instead have just let it go.
The Contractor has been observed on the Site removing dead trees i.e. just pulling them up and tossing them into a truck without any accountability as to the number being removed (and therefore needing to be replaced) :( :( :( We have asked that instead of "trees," the dead plants be replaced with mid-story and under-story species.
March 2014 - The site will continue to be closed to the public and the fence maintained for another year or 2. The residual roadbed of Illinois Ave is in the process of being removed. More understory plants will be planted on the site.
Parks Department contact: Patti.Petesch@seattle.gov
Project Site Manager: Andy.Sheffer@seattle.gov
June 2010 - Abatement Underway
November 2011 - Moving Topsoil
March 2012 - Spur Road & Fencing