Freeway Park Walking Tour - Atlas Obscura

Seattle, Washington

Freeway Park Walking Tour

Explore the first park to ever be built over a freeway.

Join Seattle native Beth Topping for a walking tour of the first freeway lid in the nation, a 5.2-acre urban space that is now a renowned Brutalist masterwork. Get to know the celebrated landscape architects and park masterminds Lawrence Halprin and Angela Danadjieva while we examine its major areas—including a breathtaking 30-foot concrete canyon built directly over the median strip of I-5.

The separate areas of the park, known as the Central Plaza, East Plaza, and West Plaza, are linked through a shared materials palette of concrete, greenery, and site furnishings. Water features enhance the landscape and differentiate the moods of each space. A fourth space, Naramore Fountain by renowned sculptor George Tsutakawa, predates Freeway Park and was integrated into the park's larger design.

Learn about the civic initiatives that made the park possible and how its compelling design was meant to heal the city. We’ll also discuss how it has changed since it was built, and how it’s adapting to accommodate the city’s ever-growing population and new cultural landscape.


  • We’ll meet in the plaza of the Park Place building at 1200 6th Ave. (The plaza is located on the side that faces Seneca.)
  • Parking: There is a pay lot next to Town Hall at 8th and Spring. There is limited street parking; please read signs carefully and park at your own discretion.
  • Public Transportation: Several King County Metro bus routes service the area.
  • This is a walking tour (less than 1 mile) through an urban space that involves climbing stairs and walking on sidewalks with a moderate grade. There is significant park infrastructure to be explored, which involves walking through concrete structures and pathways. Several entrances to the park are wheelchair accessible.
  • Only portable toilets are available in the park.
  • The tour will happen rain or shine!  Dress appropriately for the weather. Comfortable walking shoes are recommended.


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Advance ticket sales only. No refunds or exchanges. All ticket sales are final.