Once upon a time, Tl’ awh-ah-dees Park was underwater..
Tl’ awh-ah-dees Park, formerly known as Squire’s Landing Park, is approximately 45 acres of undeveloped open space along Swamp Creek and the Sammamish River in Kenmore.
In the 1980s, before Kenmore was incorporated as a City, King County acquired the 45 acres through a combination of voter-approved open space funding and state conservation grants. Several years after Kenmore became a City in 1998, King County deeded the property over to the City of Kenmore.
The Park remained as unmaintained open space until Kenmore voters approved the Walkways & Waterways bond measure in 2016. This bond measure included five capital projects, one of which was to activate about 10 of the 45 acres at Tl’ awh-ah-dees Park. These improvements are close to the confluence of the Sammamish River and Swamp Creek and center around the adjoining lagoon. The new park improvements are now complete and include new docks, bridges, view points, boardwalk, art, parking, and more. The grand opening ribbon cutting for the park is scheduled or this coming Saturday, May 6, at 10 am. You are invited!
Fun facts: Tl’ awh-ah-dees Park has a man-made lagoon. Many years ago, a crawfish-harvesting business operated from the north end of the lagoon. A large King County sewer trunk line now runs under the middle of the lagoon.
Battling the Blackberries
With the exception of the new park improvements, most of the park continues to be undeveloped open space. Unfortunately, most of this open space is plagued with invasive Himalayan Blackberry and Reed Canary Grass.
These non-native, invasive plants form harmful “monocultures” and thereby prevent biodiversity and hinder healthy wildlife habitat. There have been efforts to beat back the blackberries and replace them with native trees, but the blackberries are stubborn!
The City needs more volunteers to mount a sustained attack to keep the blackberries at bay and allow native plants to get established. To volunteer to help in this battle, visit the website, Swamp Creek Habitat Restoration Project and click on “RSVP to an upcoming work party.” The project organizes work parties at two locations: Wallace Swamp Creek Park and Tl’ awh-ah-dees Park. The project website refers to the Tl’ awh-ah-dees location as the “175th/Swamp Creek South site.”
If you haven’t been to Tl’ awh-ah-dees Park lately, make sure to get over there soon. The new improvements are impressive and will give you a front row seat to wildlife viewing.