AAA Editor Notes
Gas Works Park is at 2101 N. Northlake Way; from I-5, take the 45th St. exit, go w. on N.E. 45th St. to Meridian Ave. N., turn left and proceed s. on Meridian Ave. N. to Northlake Way, then turn right; the parking lot is on the left. A plant to manufacture gas from coal was built in 1906 on this 20-acre expanse along the north shore of Lake Union. By the 1950s natural gas importation had rendered it obsolete, but the machinery still stands and presents a curious sight, looking simultaneously antiquated and futuristic.
While the generator towers remain in ruins, two older wooden structures—the boiler house and the pump house—were restored and converted into a picnic shelter and a children's “play barn.” A grassy artificial hill created from construction rubble covered with topsoil is a popular spot for flying kites and watching fireworks; the sundial at its summit was created by two local artists. From this elevated perspective the view south across the lake to the downtown skyline—flanked on the left by Capitol Hill and on the right by Queen Anne Hill—is splendid.
Picnicking is permitted. Time: Allow 30 minutes minimum.