"Pacific Plaza (NOT parking garage of that name)" Top 5 Page for this destination Tacoma Off The Beaten Path Tip by glabah
Tacoma Off The Beaten Path: 57 reviews and 241 photos
This little park across the street from the Tacoma Art Museum doesn't exist on either the Tacoma Parks Map nor on the map of the Tacoma Art Museum, but the art museum does feature a few documents concerning its development. By its design and content, it appears to be owned by the Tacoma Art Museum.
The park is cut diagonally roughly into one third and two-thirds sections by the Tacoma LINK streetcar line. The southwestern triangle is open grass and on a warm day subject to some pretty substantial sunlight. On the other hand, it doesn't usually get that hot in the Puget Sound region.
The northeast section of the park is concrete plaza space with steps, tables, and various other features that make it a more developed place for enjoying the park. There is a fountain that runs next to the streetcar tracks in this area of the park.
Perhaps the most interesting feature of the park is the artwork. On the day I happened to visit, for example, the park was filled with sculpted letters, which people could arrange on the stair to spell just about anything, nonsensical or not. There were quite a number of words that indicated hope for the future, and I didn't notice any obscenities spelled out. "Love Haiti" appears to be a response to a recent natural disaster there, and "Blues don't hurt anyone" could be in response to music or emotions or who knows what.
There is a view of Mount Rainier from the plaza, but it is only possible to see the very top of the mountain. Furthermore, the new Highway 509 bridge obstructs the view somewhat. However, it is possible to get some impression from the plaza of the Musum of Glass "hive" mimicing the volcano, even with the new bridge in the way.
Photo 1: Pacific Plaza, as seen from the entrance to the Tacoma Art Museum (approximately). In the background is the Tacoma Convention Center.
Photo 2: The risers in the park and the series of waterfalls that make the fountain in the park. Once again the convention center towers over the park.
Photo 3: An art diplay present on my visit to the plaza and 13 August 2010 were these wooden letters scattered all over the risers in the plaza. Various things were spelled out, including some hope for the future, some political statements, and feelings of good will to a few countries suffering recent tragedies. I did not see any obscenities, which with the young people being out of school I sort of expected to see at least one or two.
Photo 4: The plaza is cut into two pieces by the Tacoma LINK streetcar line. In the back it is possible to see the open grass secton of the plaza. This is the southwestern 1/3 of the park mentioned above.
Photo 5: There is a veiw (of sorts) of Mount Rainier from the plaza, but it is only possible to see the very top of the mountain. Furthermore, the new Highway 509 bridge obstructs the view somewhat. However, it is possible to get some impression from the plaza of the Musum of Glass "hive" mimicing the volcano, even with the new bridge in the way.
The park plaza space is directly across the street from the main entrance to the Tacoma Art Museum, and about one block north of the main entrance to the Union Station federal courthouse. It is about halfway between the streetcar stations for Union Station and the Tacoma Convention Center. There are bus routes for almost all buses serving downtown Tacoma nearby, including one right on the middle east side part of the park.
The park is located on the west side of Pacific Avenue, north of 17th Avenue and south of a hotel.
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