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Wapato Park

6802 S Sheridan Ave. / S 68th St. at S Sheridan Ave.

The new dog park area is closed until the grass is established.

What's Planned for Your Park
Master Plan Implementation with infrastructure upgrades, pathway improvements, bathhouse and restroom renovation, new sprayground (small playground with water features), trail improvements, lake improvements, parking and picnic area upgrades.

The Parks Improvement Bond Measure, approved by the citizens of Tacoma in November of 2005, provides $2,000,000 for these projects:
- $1,000,000 for infrastructure upgrades, pathway improvements, restroom renovation, new spray ground, trail improvements, parking and picnic area upgrades.
- $675,000 for Bathhouse renovation
- $325,000 for water quality improvements

Project Status
Development at Wapato Park is proceeding in several phases:
• Bathhouse Reconstruction (completed)
• Demolition of Existing Residences - Vuu (completed) and Miranda (completed)
• Phase 1a: Lake Water Quality Treatment
• Phase 1b: Initial Lakeshore Development
• Phase 2: Park Capital Improvements
• COT Easement for Alaska Street Improvements


View full size construction notice.

Phase 2: Park Capital Improvements: Wapato is a family oriented resort style park reminiscent of its founding back in the late 1800's. This project will implement the first phase of improvements under the Master Plan for Wapato Park adopted by the Park Board of Commissioners January 2005. View brochure. 

Concept 2
Pathway & Shoreline Area - paved pathway should be located so that impact to lake shore is minimized. At the southwest shore, the existing gravel path may need to be replaced with a new path set back further from the shoreline. As funding allows, the existing semi-circular asphalt pathway at the south end of the park should be removed and replaced with new accessible pathways.
Off Leash Area - will be designed to include the loop drive and parking area. The existing north parking lot near the lake shore will be removed and the area planted to improve the lakeshore environment and prevent further water quality degradation. The old paved roadway will be reduced in width so it can serve as a pedestrian and maintenance path. The fenced dog park area should be expanded into the forested area to the east of the exisitng play field, significantly expanding the fenced area available to off-leash dogs. (A total area of 5 to 10 acres is desired.)
Utility Improvements - including the new fire protection-water line service to the Bathhouse and the sanitary sewer connection to the north picnic shelter (requires lift station). MPT is encouraged to research and identify less expensive ways to handle sink sewage disposal from the sink in the existing picnic shelter.
Irrigation System Enhancements
Parking and Vehicle Circulation - As funding allows, the existing parking lot will be repaired and overlaid. Some modification to the extent of pavements may be made to improve parking efficience, and the lots will be re-striped. We will explore the potential to modify drives near the Police Substation. As part of parking area improvements, corresponding surface water handling/treatment should be provided to filter surface water before it enters the Lake.
South Restroom Area Renovation

A third phase of development will be necessary, and the funding required for it will need to be raised from sources than those currently available. Improvements should include sprayground, playground, new picnic area and shelter, improvements to South Parking lots and drives, improvements on the West Side of the Park and South Park enhancements.

Project Budget: 
Park Bond funds for Wapato Park - $928,792 + $400,000 added 08/09/10
Park Bond funds for Environmental Greenspace & Natural Area Enhancement - $175,000
Park Bond funds for Off-Leash Dog Park - $175,000
Mitigation Funds - $8,050
Park Bond funds released at Wapato Bathouse Completion - $13,503
Park Bond funds released at Wapato Shoreline Planting Completion - $43,315
Park Bond funds released at Miranda Land Acquisition Completion - $4,244
Insurance funds released at Wapato Bathhuse Completion - $43,784
Anticipated RCO Grant - Land Acquisition Reimbursement - $212,878
(for purchase of one home at the Southeast shore of the lake)
RCO Grant - Wapato Park Shoreline Access - $500,000
Total capital funds assigned to this project - $2,502,566

Project Status:
The contractor is working again and will be doing asphalt paving at the Sheridan Street Entry and South Parking Lot as soon as the weather allows. Progress is now being made on curbing and pavement preparation at the South Lot. The off-leash park area has been closed to the public so the contractor can complete work there.
03/16/12 There has been almost no activity because of the weather.
02/24/12 Cold wet weather and park user traffic are making it difficult to establish turf. Many previously seeded areas are not establishing. The Dog Park is being used by the public even though the work isn't complete.
02/17/12 Some asphalt paving remains to be completed including the Sheridan Street entrance and 72nd Street parking lot. Irrigation control and coverage tests remain to be completed. Some of the irrigation controls are not yet fully installed.
01/09/12 The project is about 90% complete. Rock work at shoreline, paving at the south end of the site, planting and lawns remain to be completed. Work is proceeding on City right of way improvements at 68th & Sheridan. A change order #6 will be presented to the Park Board on 01/09/12. We don't envision satisfactory turf establishment until sometime later this spring. 
12/02/11 The contractor is working on the Sheridan Street entrance. We are working on the details of paving for the 72nd Street parking lot. That lot will be closed when work begins and all park access will be routed to the central parking lot. Recent rains have left the dog park site very wet. This is slowing down progress on pathways, planting and irrigation. Equipment cannot operate in some areas. We anticipate extending the contract time at least another 30 days.
10/28/11 The 68th Street entrance asphalt overlay is finished along with the central parking lot. Next week they will work on paving the new parking lot for the dog park. The south parking lot will also be re-paved and receive new curbing. The walkway around the lake is complete. Irrigation and planting are proceeding at the south and west sides of the Lake. Plumbing rough-in is proceeding at the South Restroom. Shoreline grading, rock work and plantings are proceeding. Site furniture is being installed. The contractor continues to expect to complete the project by the end of the year.
10/14/11 The City has begun installation of the retaining wall on Alaska Street. The contractor is preparing to hydroseed slopes in the adjacent area. Plumbing work at the restroom has begun. Grading at the dog park is nearly complete and we anticipate paving by next week.
10/07/11 The ponds were excavated at the dog park and drainage structures are being installed. The West side along Alaska Street was hydro seeded. Paving work is planned for late October. The central parking lot will be closed next week to complete the work in that area.
09/30/11 Concret walkway is 95% complete. They are working on the fire suppression system, dog park, demolishing the restroom plumbing and irrigation testing. The city is starting Alaska Street next week. completion date is anticipated to be on December 30.
09/16/11 Grading in the off-leash park area is continuing as is work at the lake edge. The new concrete pathway around the lake is nearly complete. Irrigation is being installed and turf areas are being prepared. Substantial Completion remains scheduled for Dec. 29. It will be important to test the off-leash site with limited numbers of people/dogs during the wet weather.
09/09/11 Fire sprinkler work is beginning. Permits from Tacoma Fire Dept. are still pending. Grading in the lower dog park has begun based on revised permit documents. Shore edge work continues. Irrigation installation and turf area preparation are underway.
07/29/11 The Contractor is nearly done with sidewalk and curbing at the 68th Street entry. Grading on the west side of the Park is nearly complete with the public routed onto the upper path so shoreline rock work can begin on the lower path. We anticipate paving beginning in September. Dog Park site plan revisions are being designed. Shoreline stone placement is beginning this morning. 
07/22/11 Work continues on the curb and sidewalk at the entrance. Grading at the West side is nearly complete and rock walls are being placed. Grading is beginning on the Southeaast side of the park. Rock for shore edge treatments is being selected today. Paving is expected to occur at the end of September.
07/08/11 Work is proceeding on the entry drive, walks and irrigation. Grading is nearly complete on the Alaska Street/West Side areas. Shoreline work is planned for August when lake levels are lowest. Asphalt paving is planned for September.
07/01/11 Clearing is nearly complete and the contractor is working in multiple locations. The entry drive curbs are being installed, grading is nearly complete in the upper Dog Park and the contractor is re-grading the west side. Several dead trees have been removed. Some of those logs can be used by the contractor as part of shoreline and Dog Park construction. The design team is working to resolve conflicts between the existing waterline through the park and some of the Dog Park drainage features.
06/17/11 Selective demolition of the south restroom is complete. Clearing in the Dog Park area is being finished. The site is now dryer and grading can proceed. We continue to have concerns about coordinating the work with public access, the City's work on Alaska Street and the water levels in Wapato Lake.
06/10/11 Clearing is nearly complete in the Dog Park area. Selective demolition at the restroom is nearly complete. There are a few remaining items that prevent the City from allowing the contractor to begin work on the Work Order at S 68th & Sheridan.
06/03/11 Selective demolition at the south restroom is nearly complete. The south parking lot has been removed and the area brought to grade. Clearing and demolition are proceeding in the Dog Park area. The baseball backstop was removed and the trail system is being cut in.
05/13/11 The contractor is mobilizing on site. Clearing limits are being staked and trees will be marked for removal.
05/06/11 Notice to Proceed was issued this week.
04/01/11 Contract pending - Board decision on April 11.
03/25/11 Bids were received March 24 - the apparent low bidder is Nordic Construction. The bid amount will allow MPT to accept all of the alternates. We continue to work with COT on coordinating our work with their Alaska Street improvements.
03/18/11 The project is out to bid with bids due March 24. City of Tacoma is installing the fire meter. This will require that water is shut off in the park for several days. Parks will provide portable toilets while that work is going on.
03/08/11 A revised permit submission covering surface water issues that remain outstanding is being submitted to the City today.
03/04/11 Pre-bid walk through was Thursday. There were 13 contractors.
02/18/11 Bidding is scheduled to begin March 1. Bids are due March 24.
02/04/11 There has been a delay in putting this project out to bid due to additional permit concerns with the City - the issue pertains to potentially high ground water levels in the off-leash park area. Other work is being done to complete new and existing utility easements for City/Park District utilities within the park. We are also working with COT on their plans for Alaska Street improvements.
01/21/11 Building Permit and Work Order for street improvements have been re-submitted following city review. Initial meetings with City staff have occurred. Documents are due at Metro Parks the week of Feb. 24 with bidding scheduled to begin Feb. 1.
12/17/10 MPT has completed a technical review of 90% construction documents. A building permit and work order for street improvements have been applied for and initial meetings with City staff have occurred.
10/15/10 A technical team review of construction documents is scheduled for Oct. 19. Land use permits are in hand. The building permit will be applied for on October 19.  We continue to target construction through the summer of 2011. Work on restoration of the existing docks is not part of the current capital project. A permit process for work on the docks has not begun and could require 9 to 12 months to secure. During construction - a loop path walking route will be maintained fo rth epublic, one of the two parking areas will remain open for public use, two-way traffic will be re-established on the driveway system; and access the the MPT shops area will be maintained.
09/03/10 An amendment to the A&E Agreement has been completed and the design team has resumed work. A coordination meeting was held on 08/31/10.
08/20/10 The project budget was increased by $400,000 to $2.5 million, which will include improvements to the Sheridan Street entry drive; a fire sprinkler system for the Bathhouse; pavement overlays in the parking lots; and expanded drainage facilities at the off-leash park, entry drive and central parking lot. Land use permits have been secured including the permit from Washington Fish & Wildlife. Building permits remain to be applied for in October. The project should go to bid in November with bids received in December. We would authorize the contractor to begin work in the early spring with constructin to occur during the dry weather this coming summer. The project should be complete by September of 2011.
06/25/10 A proposal for supplemental funding is pending. A board resolution amending the A&E Agreement is also pending. The project was reviewed with the CIC on 06/16/10. Several scope adjustments are being discussed.
05/28/10 Staff is recommending the addition of $400K to the project budget from the Bond 'unallocated' fund so that parking lot paving, entry drive improvements and the south restroom renovation can all become part of the base bid. The scope of the off-leash park would be reduced by $100,000 which means that at a minimum, the upper hillside fenced area and trails and one of the shelters would be eliminated. Given permitting, design and funding questions still outstanding - and the lake shore conditions and wet soils in the off-leash park area - it will be more prudent for us to plan to do the most weather-sensitive work next spring/summer. It is likely we'll bid the project in the fall of this year.
05/20/10 A Washington Fish & Wildlife Hydraulics Project Approval application was made on 05/18/10. The city Shoreline/Conditional Use permit process is still pending. The bathhouse fire sprinkler feasibility and costs are not yet established. Budget concerns have been the subject of CPG and Executive Cabinet discussion.
05/14/10 Site workshop is currently configuring the documents to include general park improvements, water access and shoreline work, off-leash park and City-required off-site improvements in the base bid. The fire sprinklers, south restroom improvements, main parking lot paving overlay, site lighting and improvements to the Sheridan entry are all shown as additive alternates.
05/07/10 Additional soil testing in the off-leash park area has proven that there is a much higher seasonal ground water table than previously assumed which would cause it to be muddy in winter. As a result, changes have been proposed for surface water treatment, detention and disposal. Parking lot water would be collected down the center line of the lot. A storm water filter would be installed to treat surface water from the parking lot. Surface water would be detained in the basins previously assumed to be 'rain garden' infiltration. From those locations, a controlled outfall would send water slowly to a 'dispersal Trench.' The Dispersal Trench area would in turn overflow into a series of 'low points' which would also be collecting overland flow from the dog-park itself. all would ultimately either infiltrate or overflow into the wetland to the north.
10/02/09 The small plant bed in the center of the oval east of the bathhouse and the small east-west running path south of the bathhouse can be removed. There should be at least one 'Spine Trail' thru the forested dog park  that is approximately 8 feet wide and accessible by gator or small pickup. The other trails could be approximately 5 feet wide. Some level of concrete paving is needed at the Dog Park entries. Some grading in the larger Dog Park field is desirable. Widening of the drive near the police substation should be done in Phase 2 to allow two way traffic thru the park.
09/25/09 The design team has had several meeting swith COT to discuss the application for land use approvals which are complicated since there are both Shoreline and Non-Shoreline Conditional Use Permits as well as Wetland/Critical Areas permits required. Some lever of State Dept. of Fish & Wildlife and possibly US Army Corps of Engineers permitting may also be required. At meetings with South Tacoma and South End Neighborhood Councils attendees were largely in support of the project with no objectins. Community members expressed continuing concern for water quality but are beginning to understand the complex conditions surrounding the issue. There has been a good deal of interest in the dog park element. COT, UW and others are doing work in teh watershed now aimed at addressing the long term water quality issues in the lake. This is likely to result in the definition of a substantial Phase 4 project sometime in the coming two years.
09/18/09 A meeting is scheduled for next Monday with COT to work on the wetland mitigation/land use permit. There are some concerns that the off-leash dog park area is low and wet and could become nearly un-usable in winter weather. Staff is looking into gravel aprons and ways to provide some kind of positive drainage. Currently un-funded Phase Three improvements would include the playground/sprayground, picnic shelter and changes to the south drives and parking. We are targeting completion of contract documents and bidding by February. This will allow a summer construction season which will be desirable particularly for work in the wetter parts of the site.
09/11/09 Design Development phase plans, outline specifications, and cost estimates were submitted to MPT and a design development presentation was held at Wapato Bathhouse yesterday. It was an informal setting in which the landscape architects could discuss the proposed plans with park users and members fo the public. We plan to start organizing a pet owner's group to help with dog park management while the facility is still in design. Staff will be reviewing the designwith the Korean Women's Association and also with the South Tacoma Neighborhood Council Sept. 16 and the South End Neighborhood Council Sept. 21.
08/28/09 The land use permit pre-application meeting with the City of Tacoma was held this week. A report from the City is expected within a week. Wetland buffers have already been maped and confirmed. Impacts from park development will be assessed and mitigation measures proposed. Much of the project involves removal of impervious surfaces and improvements to the shoreline that can be considered mitigation. There are significant requests from COT Public Works that the project provide street improvements on both Alaska Street and Sheridan Street. COT Dept. of Environmental Services has now smoke tested the sanitary sewers and drainage systems within the park (at not cost to MPT). A report is forthcoming that identifies a number of problems and locates drain lines we had no record of. We expect COT to continue to work with us on these utility issues - such as plugging old municipal sewer pipes within the park. SiteWorkshop presented 70% design drawings which included the following. Upgrades to the pedestrian pathway system including completion of the concrete pathway all of the way around the lake and narrowing of the existing northern roadway tomake it a ten foot wide pathway. Additional shoreline plantings will be established. Parking area improvements, overlays and re-striping will include storm water upgrades. Our engineers are considering the use of rain gardens and bio-swales to provide water treatment. ADA parking provisions will beimproved at all three parkign locations. Utility improvements will include a new water main to serve the bathhouse.
07/24/09 The Design Development phase is planned to be complete for a presentation to the public on Sept. 10. Another Steering Committee meeting is planned for Aug. 25. CIC and Park Board reviews will occur following the public meeting. The State RCO has notified us that the Water Access grant will be fully funded at $500K. The $500K is to be used for water access improvements and must be matched with an equal amount of funding from other MPT sources. The main pathway around the lake will be continued as a concrete walk identical to the current path so a paved walkway extends around the lake. Other pathways are are planned to be compacted gravel, similar to those provided at Wright Park. The semi-circular asphalt pathway that follows the row of oak trees at the south end will be replaced with compacted gravel and realigned to avoid conflicts with the roots of the oak trees. Large stones will be used to harden the lake edge at places where it will be desirable to provide access and preserve views. Recent results from the COT study monitoring wells show that there is very little ground water to replenish the water in the lake - evaporation results in significant draw down with no way to supplement with new water. Management practices will be necessary to discourage use of the lake and park by geese. Ideas are being reviewed to improve parking lot paving and establish new surface water detention and treatment facilities that will place an emphasis on bio swales and rain gardens that provide infiltration. Staff is looking at removing the north parking lot and narrowing the existing north roadway which will be converted to a pedestrian pathway. The existing south driveway could be converted to a two way street, requiring some widening of the paved surface. The North picnic shelter is proposed to be moved closer to the water when the north parking lot is demolished along the lakeshore pathway. The off-leash area is proposed to have three separate fenced areas for dog and owners - general use, small & shy dogs, and a forest hillside with trails. There are a number of old, unhealthy and inappropriate trees that should be removed - this project will install significantly more trees and shrubs than it removes.
06/05/09 The design team has been authorized to begin Design Development work following modification of the project scope and budget. The project will be reviewed at a 'Wake Up for Wapato' event on 06/13/09 and a Steering Committee meeting is scheduled for 06/23/09.
05/15/09 Site Workshop has been directed to proceed into the Design Development Phase of the project on the basis of a modified version of Concept 2.
05/01/09 RCO Grant was confirmed. Recent approval of an additional $231,125 brings total funding to $1,812,225. There is new money for shoreline improvements. It requires that a matching amount be provided from MPT funds.
02/27/09 Priority areas include completing the trail around the south end of the lake, providing a dog park and improving the lake shore in general. The sprayground is a necessary part of the project as described in the bond program. It should be south of the bathhouse - a larger facility (an additional $200K) and reticulating mechanical system (an additional $100K) is desired but significantly beyond the currently available funding. Two other items that are desireable but outside current funding are a parking lot to serve the dog park and removal of the existing north parking lot.
02/20/09 Two Design Concepts are being reviewed. Concept 1 includes a sprayground but eliminates parking revisions in the north part of the park and sewer connections to the existing picnic shelter. Concept 2 includes parking revisions at the north end of the park, serving the Off-leash area and removal of the existing north parking lot. Sewer service to the north picnic shelter is provided. Both concepts represent a scope of work that can be accomplished within the existing MACC of $888K.

Send comments to: the project manager: Doug Fraser at or 253-305-1019. TTY 253-759-9286
02/13/09 The Wapato Park steering committee met 02/10/09. Two options for use of bond funds were reviewed with the primary issue being whether or not to build a sprayground as described in the bond brochure. The wetland delineation confirmation has been completed - all major buffers around the lake are to be the full 300 feet as called for in the COT Critical Areas ordinance.
01/23/09 Site Workshop has completed a proposed Schematic Design and cost estimate and is working with MPT to make choices regarding the scope of improvements to be constructed. 12/12/08 City comments on our wetland deliniation have been received and meetings with COT staff are scheduled to discuss permittiing requirements.
10/24/08 Allise Shingle of Site Workshop presented two conceptual site plan option. - these have already been reviewed with the project Steering Committee and the public. Alternative Plan #1 significantly revised the parking and drives at the south end of the park. the south restroom building is proposed to be removed and the off-leash area is proposed to be located on the former sports field to the north. The Sprayground/Playground is shown located north of the bathhouse in a similar location to the present play area. Alternative Plan #2 retains the layout of the south parking areas and retains the south restroom building. The off-leash area is proposed to be located more centrally, in the clearing east of the bathhouse. Both plans propose enhancements to the pathway around the lake and elimination of the north parking lot. Both plans provide additional parking through the center of the site offsetting the loss of parking at the north lot. The City anticipates improving the right of way of Alaska Street so that curbs, gutter and sidewalk would be provided along the park.
10/09/08 A meeting was held to discuss and prioritize 2005 Park Improvement Bond Funds to begin carrying forward the Master Plan for Wapato Park. These are the two design alternatives under consideration. Click on either image to see larger view. We are interested in your feedback - contact Doug Fraser.
07/11/08 Consultant selection interviews were completed on June 30. Site Workshop was selected and we have begun contract negotiations for A&E services.
05/30/08 A steering committee has been formed and two meetings have been held.
03/28/08 Cost estimates for park access on Alaska Street, signage, furniture, irrigation and pathways is $130,000+. A steering committee is being established to help MPT decide how to best use available capital funds for both phase 1 and phase 2. We cannot lower the level of the lake because of downstream flooding hazards that could result. Completing the path around the lake to facilitate easy pedestrian walks is probably one of our highest priorities.
02/01/08 There will be two construction contracts - one for shoreline plantings in 2008 and the other for the balance of improvements to be completed in 2010.
07/20/07 Site survey and wetland deliniation services have been completed. Next steps are pending resolution of water quality studies.

Project Schedule - Wapato Park Improvements
• Approval of Project Scope Definition - May 2008
• Initiation of Professional Services Agreement - June2008
  - Site Workshop
• Schematic Design Phase Presentations & Reviews - February 2009
• Presentation of Design Development Phase - September 2009
• Completion of Design Documents and Submittal for Approval - May 2010
• Estimated date for securing of all permits - January 2010
• Anticipated bid advertisement date - March 1, 2011
• Begin Construction - June 28, 2011
  - Nordic Construction
• Construction Substantially Complete - December 30, 2011

Steering Committee: MPT staff as well as representatives from adjoining neighbors, Tacoma Police Department and the South End Neighborhood Council will be represented.

Public Meetings:
• There will be two community meetings for review during the Schematic Design Phase and the Design Development Phase. 
  - The first public meeting held on October 9, 2008 featured discussion and prioritization of 2005 Park Improvement Bond Funds to begin carrying forward the Master Plan for Wapato Park. View Flyer
• Opening ceremonies will be held at project completion.

Sustainability and 'Green Practices': Measures most likely to be included are
- Use of permeable paving surfaces
- Energy efficient lighting fixtures
- Bio-swales for storm water run-off treatment
- Native plantscaping throughout the park and especially around the perimeter of the lake.

Maintenance & Operations Impact Forecast:
- Regular scheduled maintenance will remain fairly constant in that no new areas will be added to the currently developed site.
- The budget for periodic capital maintenance/preventative maintenance will need to be increased primarily as it relates to the proposed new sprayground facility.
- Program staff costs and associated overhead are likely to increase with the upgrade of the Bathhouse to a rentable facility, new picnic areas, and the proposed inclusion of a sprayground as part of the play area.

Project Manager: Dick Ramsey, 253-305-1056. TTY 253-759-9286

COT Easement for Alaska Street Improvements: On April 25, 2011 the Board granted the City of Tacoma an easement along the entire western boundary of Wapato Park for road improvements as part of the City's $6 million project to improve Alaska Street from 56th to 72nd Street. work in the easement will include grading that will gently slope the hillside between the street and park. Our urban forester will work with City crews to ensure protection of healthy trees bordering th work zone. COT will provide an ADA accessible pathway from Alaska Street into the park and will create a mid-block crosswalk for park visitors. COT will also landscape the hillside with native vegetation and monitor the health of the plantings for five years while the foliage becomes established. Construction will take place beginning this fall with completion anticipated by mid-summer 2012 to coincide with 2005 Park Bond Improvement construction scheduled for Wapato Park.

Project Status
According to our agreements, COT will maintain planting areas for five years concurrent with the monitoring and maintenance they are required to do in mitigation planting areas. MPT has agreed to provide an irrigation service connection for the temporary irrigation in the slope easement area. It's our mutual intention that the area be 'naturalized' and that the effort result in an established stand of native plants following the five year maintenance cycle. construction in the slope easement area is intended to begin n September of this year. A ten foot wide strip in the easement is intended to receive runoff water from the adjacent sidewalk and is considered an 'infiltration easement'. Our urban forester, Kathy Sutalo, will monitor construction and ongoing maintenance.
06/13/11 The easements are in place for the Alaska Street improvements at Wapato Park.  The engineering design is nearing completion and will be put out to bid soon.  A final step for Metro Parks is to approve the plans for the improvements along the park frontage.  This is a formality that allows us to have a set of plans on file documenting what is intended before construction begins….There may be field adjustments during construction, but this represents our, and the City's best intentions at bid time….
04/01/11 COT has produced updated landscape plans for improvements along the frontage of Alaska Street. They are proposing a slope easement for the area where an existing rock wall needs to be replaced. The property would continue to be part of the park but there would be restrictions on future changes to the new slope and retaining wall which would be structural elements of the street. They are also proposing a temporary access permit for areas where minor fills and disturbances are likely to occur on park property during street construction. The city's estimated cost of improvements is $142K.
03/08/11 The proposed extent of a slope easement for construction of Alaska Street improvements is to be marked out on the ground on March 7.
10/15/10 COT is planning improvements to Alaska Street adjacent to the park. There will be a pedestrian connection from the park pathway system to a mid-block crosswalk on Alaska Street. A proposed rain garden will manage surface water at the southwest corner of the park. A slope easement will be needed to allow the city to construct improvements on park property.

• Bathhouse building renovation to repair fire damage and add public restroom
• Purchase and demolition of two homes on the east side of the Lake
• Lake water treatment to combat toxic algae growth
• Native shoreline plantings to help with water quality

Preliminary discussion of Wapato Lake Marine Structure Repairs
There are two existing docks at Wapato:
- East Pier: Located at the Bathhouse. It is closed and in very poor/dangerous condition.
- South Pier: Located at the south end of the lake near the outlet structure.
Staff is discussing potential costs, funding, permits, programming, ADA accessibility and potential usage needs.

Phase 1C: Additional lakeshore plantings utilizing State Funding

Budget: $75,000

North Shore Before North Shore After

07/17/09 The project is now complete.
01/15/09 Project Start

Total Landscape

Project Manager: Curtis Hancock, 253-305-1052. TTY 253-759-9286

Phase 1b: Initial Lakeshore Development: Work included early park improvements that needed to be carried out with grant funds specifically identified for use in that year as well as lakeshore plantings (shoreline embankment and enhancement). Site surveys and wetland delineations have already been completed.

2005 Park Bond Funds for Wapato Park - $150,000
The Tahoma Fund Grant - Pierce Conservation District - $20,000
State DOE Clean Water Fund Grant - $50,000
CTED Grant - $35,000 & $70,000 (added 01/13/09 to cover additional shoreline plantings on the south end of the lake)

Project Status

North Shore Before North Shore After

07/17/09 The project is now complete.
10/20/08 Contractor began work on site.
07/25/08 The plants and trees on the plant list will eventually grow quite large and block the view of the lake - the purpose of the plantings is for water quality. Large, dense vegetation is intended to provide shade, reduce wind, and discourage waterfowl.
03/28/08 The draft concept site plan for potential shoreline plantings proposed for the north and west shores of Wapato Lake are intended to reduce erosion, reduce use by water fowl and reduce water mixing from wind. Cost estimates for landscape areas is over $400,000 with another $60,000 estimated for six 'hardened' shoreline access points.
February 2007 Project Start 

Design Team - Grette Associates
• Total Landscape

Steering Committee - MPT staff, City of Tacoma, representatives from adjoining neighbors, Tacoma Police Dept., and South End Neighborhood Council

Project Manager: Curtis Hancock, 253-305-1052. TTY 253-759-9286

Phase 1a: Lake Water Quality Treatment: This project generates improvements to the lake for the purpose of improving the water quality and future resource management. Potential elements of this work may include vegetation establishment, aeration systems, dilution system and storm drainage controls. This work should make the lake safe for recreational contact but swimming is not likely.

Capital funds assigned to this project - $325,000
State funds: Department of Ecology Centennial Clean Water Funds ($50,000) and Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development Capital Program ($250,000).

Project Report on Management of Wapato Lake Quality - January 2008
prepared by Tetra Tech, Inc.
02/08/08 Update Summary of Lake Treatment
Wapato Lake is laden with high levels of phosphorus, resulting in seasonal toxic algae outbreaks which restrict public access to this popular regional amenity.

MPT staff worked with Dr. Gibbons, a limnologist from Tetra Tech, who conducted a one year study of the lake's life cycle to determine treatment options. His report highlighted the need for phased action to improve lake quality. Phase 1 (which includes alum treatment, shoreline plantings, and public education projects by MPT) will improve water quality for the near term, while longer-term approaches addressing source issues within the surrounding watershed can be studied and addressed.

As Phase 1 work was conducted by MPT, COT Environmental Services concurrently conducted investigative studies within the watershed to identify possible longer range options, including:
• Groundwater: Three groundwater monitoring wells installed in locations directly north/south and east of the lake to investigate groundwater movement and its phosphorous content.
• Storm Water: Investigation of storm water flows and phosphorous concentrations coming into and out of the north pond/wetland area.
• Source Control: Field investigation of the storm water system at the watershed that supplies storm water to the lake. Results of this exploration may require additional tasks and field investigation.

Work previously done in 2006-2007:
Water Quality Planning: This was a planning study that collected water quality data on Wapato Lake over a one year period.

Project status:
Water Before Water After

01/08/10 Treatment of the lake with alum in the summer of 2008, as recommended by water quality studies project is complete.
08/25/08 Director Steve Knauer reported to the Board that pH levels at Wapato Lake continue to rebound naturally to within the range required by the Department of Ecology, so the plan for addition of sodium bicarbonate no longer appears to be needed. He also reported that staff met with the newly formed Friends of Wapato Lake group, residents who have stepped forward to assist with the long term lake management plan by assisting with water quality monitoring, storm stenciling and other outreach efforts.
08/11/08 Since the pH in the lake had not risen to the desired level naturally yet, Tetra Tech has been talking with DOE about a permit modification to allow for application of a bicarbonate, essentially a baking soda-like compound that would provide an Alka Seltzer type of effect for the lake which could stimulate the pH elevation.
07/28/08 While the alum tratment was a success in binding with the phosphorus that feeds blue-green algae and the lake is rebounding from treatment, Tetra Tech is investigating why many fish died unexpectedly Saturday evening, one day after the application. During the final stages of application, the pH unexpectedly dropped nearly in half, pointing to possible problems with the second batch of alum or its buffering agent. The board was advised that a host of wildlife, including tadpoles, turtles and dragonflies are visible across the lake's perimeter despite the loss of fish, and the water is clear indicating that the lake is returning to a healthier state.
07/17/08 The alum treatment will be applied on July 25. It should reduce the number of blue-green algae outbreaks that the lake suffers for the next 5 years.

Project Manager:
Water Quality - Steve Knauer, 253-305-1051 / TTY 253-759-9286
Plantings - Doug Fraser, 253-305-1019 / TTY 253-759-9286

Miranda Property Before Miranda Property After

Miranda Property Acquisition & Demolition: This project was for the acquisition of the last private home on the lake. Project funds included appraisal, purchase price, closing costs, demolition and site restoration. The Wapato Park Master Plan approved by the Board in 2005 identifies this site as a potential location for a cafe/concession building.

• $246,208 from bond funds
• $18,000 from Land Acquisition
• $213,633 RCO Grant

Project Status:

Removal of the home now provides the opportunity to fulfill a long-term vision to develop a continuous loop trail around the lake's perimeter.
09/30/09 During the annual Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition meeting, former Governors Dan Evans and Mike Lowry presented MPT with the program's Outstanding Achievement award for the Wapato property acquisition project.
04/30/08 The building has been demolished - project is complete.

Project Manager: Doug Fraser, 253-305-1019 / TTY 253-759-9286

Click Arrows to Scroll Thru Images of the Finished Bathhouse
Bathhouse Restoration: This project repaired the Bathhouse following significant fire damage from arson and provided upgrades to the building consistent with the Master Plan for Wapato Park adopted by the Park Board of Commissioners September 2005. Under the master plan, the original bathhouse function is eliminated and the building is intended to be used as a rental venue. The work included:
  • Modifications and remodeling of the existing restrooms.
  • Upgrades to the building shell including roof, exterior walls, doors and windows.
  • Improvements to the building interior to improve existing concession space in anticipation of a future concessionaire contract.
  • Improved ADA access to the ground floor and restrooms. ADA access to the second floor will be considered during design.
  • Improvements to heating, plumbing, ventilation security, and other building systems.

The historic nature of the building was respected and preserved in the reconstruction. Overall, the improvements repaired all fire damage and are expected to extend the useful life of the building for at least another 30 years.

Bathhouse Before Bathhouse After

Budget: $1,101,474
• $675,000 from bond funds
• $426,474 from fire insurance

Phase I Project Status:

11/07/08 The work is now finished.

Project Manager: Kristi Evans, 253-305-1054 / TTY 253-759-9286

Vuu Property Acquisition: This project was for the acquisition of one of the two remaining residential properties within Wapato Park. The Wapato Park Master Plan identifies this site as a potential location for a new picnic shelter.
Vuu Property Before Vuu Property After

Budget: $402,800
• $254,000 from 2005 Bond Funds in Land Acquisition and Development 
• $146,000 from Land Acquistion & Development Special Revenue Fund
• $2,800 from Capital Project Program
This includes purchase price, closing costs, demolition of the house and restoration of the site.

Project Status:

05/11/07 The house has been demolished. There is now a clear view of the lake.

Project Manager: Doug Fraser, 253-305-1019. TTY 253-759-9286

Last Updated: Apr 20, 2012 9:40 AM