Life in South Park
South Park families arrive from many parts of the world to build their dreams here. Visitors can learn about the history of the Duwamish people who first fished along the river and farmed its shores, and the more than 100 years of immigrant families who have settled and flourished in South Park. The South Park Arts historic architecture walking tour features 20 stops including the South Park Neighborhood Center in the old brick Firehouse.
South Park is a pulsing hub of industry, and an important part of Seattle’s success as a port city. Cargo ships from Elliot Bay arrive via the Duwamish Waterway. Business parks and industrial facilities support manufacturing, recycling, and nearby aerospace, all conveniently located just north of SeaTac and surrounding industrial areas. Industries located in the Duwamish Valley support approximately 80,000 family-wage jobs in Seattle each year.
South Park is a community of character. People living throughout the Duwamish Valley speak more than 30 languages. For decades the citizens of South Park have raised strong families, farmed the fertile land, and forged independent businesses. Residents have a track record of stepping up and speaking out in a proud tradition of civic involvement to support the services, amenities, facilities, and resources in their community. South Park celebrates its diverse history and culture.
“The thing that keeps us here is that it’s a real neighborhood in the classic old-fashioned way of people working together to make the place a better place to live.”
— Dagmar Cronn, South Park resident
Seattle’s South Park Residents Share a Passion for Place
By Lornet Turnbull, The Seatle Times published July 2011
It’s late on a Saturday morning in South Park, and in an area of this Seattle neighborhood they call the Sliver on the River two women stand chatting just outside their homes.
Carol Anderson, who has lived here more than five decades, is still in her house robe.
On the street, two boys — one white, the other of mixed heritage — toss a soccer ball between them, every now and then scampering out of the path of an oncoming car.
South Park Then and Now
By Roger Valdez, Seattle’s Land Use Code blog published July 2011
“South Park is a rough-around-the-edges neighborhood. Come to think of it, even the placid Leave it to Beaver like residential center of the neighborhood is kind of rough too. But the neighborhood is just too damn rough for folks that want to wear roughness like a pair of factory distressed designer jeans. The neighborhood bar I was too scared to enter back in the 90s had a sign on the door that said “no crybabies.” That ought to be the official motto of the neighborhood. But let me be clear, it’s not like it isn’t friendly. It’s just not fertile soil for the more effete urbanist set. But it’s a neighborhood just like any other in many ways too. I find that it’s kind of an oasis of honesty.”
— Roger Valdez