Volunteer Park Amphitheater
VOLUNTEER PARK AMPHITHEATER – SEATTLE, WA
In Fall 2015, ORA was engaged by Volunteer Park Trust to design a comprehensive transformation of the outdoor amphitheater within Volunteer Park in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle. The new stage pavilion and reconfigured amphitheater lawn seating area restore key aspects of the original Olmsted park design and enhances the surrounding site to create an engaging, highly adaptable space well-suited for diverse everyday uses and performances. By re-siting the new stage pavilion north of the existing outdated stage, an original arched Olmsted path will be reintroduced, restoring a vital aspect of the Olmsteds’ original design for the Great Lawn. Public restrooms will be integrated within the new pavilion, situated near the restored pathway for easier access and visibility. ORA collaborated closely with landscape architect Walker Macy to integrate landscape enhancements and ADA accessibility upgrades that blend well with the historic Olmsted context. Flexible space for education, special events, performance, and everyday activities are key considerations in the process of the amphitheater’s design along with safety, access, acoustic quality, and noise management. Extensive outreach and dialogue with community members, performers, Landmarks groups, and Seattle Parks and Recreation has strongly informed the design approach and engendered broad project support. Schematic Design was completed in March 2017, and fundraising is currently underway, with start of construction planned for late 2020.