Tumwater will open its newest neighborhood park this weekend on top of a giant water tank.
The Deschutes Valley Park is a collaboration between the city and the LOTT Clean Water Alliance. The park sits atop a buried water storage tank on city-owned property at 600 T St. SE.
The park will officially open to the public at 11 a.m. Saturday with a public celebration that includes speeches from local dignitaries, a ribbon cutting and snacks. On-site parking is limited, and attendees are encouraged to carpool.
The half-acre park overlooks the Tumwater Valley Municipal Golf Course and features a children’s jungle gym, grassy play area, benches, a restroom, six parking spaces and a future connection to the planned Deschutes Valley Trail. The timeline for creating the trail depends on environmental studies and the availability of grant money, said Chuck Denney, the city’s parks and recreation director.
Formerly known as T Street Park, the site includes colorful water-themed tile mosaics by local artist Mike Cummins that honor Thurston County’s landmarks and tribal heritage. Cummins is expected to attend Saturday’s opening festivities.
Beneath it all is a storage tank for reclaimed water, which is another term for treated wastewater. The storage tank can hold up to 1 million gallons of reclaimed water, according to LOTT, and the water will irrigate the Tumwater Valley Golf Course, as well as the park itself.
Cost for the storage tank construction was about $3.9 million and was funded by a loan from the state Department of Ecology, according to LOTT.
The total park project’s cost is about $5.2 million. The city reports its share of construction for the park was about $300,000.