Sunday, May 15, 2005

The Ballard Bowl and the new Ballard Library

Well the developers won and the Ballard skate park (Ballard Bowl) has been nuked, dug up, and turned into a mud pit.

At the same time, right next door, the brand new Ballard Library opened. Complete with wooden beams, to remind us of the forest that used to cover this city, and grass growing on the roof, that has no real purpose at all except for maybe an interesting, way to cover a roof.

The good news is that the developers promised to build a new better and bigger skate bowl when they tear down the old Safeway. I'm hopeful but, I'm not going to hold my breath. I will be the first to eat crow and post the bowl construction pictures when the actually get around to building it.

Here are some pictures of the Ballard Bowl, R.I.P. and the new library.
Posted by Hello

Right next door to the freshly demoed Ballard skate park is a brand new sparkling library, which just opened Saturday May 14th ... Posted by Hello

This is a picture that from Gridline that shows the Ballard skate park before it was demoed. Posted by Hello

The new Ballard bowl. Can't skate here no more. It's a very sad month for north Seattle citizens. I hope the city upholds it’s promise to replace the bowl with a bigger one in the new city park.  Posted by Hello

To see what the bowl used to be and look like go to it's sponsor, GRINDLINE!


thinkgreentoday said...

Now really, "to remind us of the forest that used to cover this city?" I must have missed the virgin forest as I recall there was a nasty parking lot here before the library.
Here is one of the greenest buildings in Seattle. It reclaimed a terrible example of a building that was built when there seemed to be competition about who could burn the most oil. The "grass" roof must provide almost 100% green space on the property. Green roofs reduce heat sinks in the city that change the climates of urban areas by as much as 15 degrees warmer than surrounding areas. The green roof slows the runoff from rainfall so it enters the storm sewers long after the parking lots, streets, and even skate parks have dumped huge torrents of water through the system. A good portion of the water hitting the green roof is actually held and used by the plants of the roof in their natural growth cycle as they eat up carbon dioxide and produce oxygen. The green roof provides habitat to songbirds and the flowers and seeds provide nurishment for them as well.
"No real purpose?" You have a photo sitting on a gas guzzling, exhaust spewing, noise producing motorcycle in an outfit made of animal skin and you see no purpose for a green roof. I am not surprised. You are criticizing one of the most ambitious achievements by the community and the first major steps towards a cleaner environment that Seattle has achieved. The community stepped up to the plate and should be proud of this building. There are hundreds if not thousands of citizens struggling to get Seattle to recognize the benefits of green roofs. We are building our own on carports and houses. We are discussing them whenever and wherever possible. There is a passion for green roofs and the benefits they provide. Shame on you. I support the bowl and I love bikes but I think your comments apply more directly to the concrete mass required there than this symbol of hope for our community. I hope the bowl and park will be as green in its approach. I also hope the community will embrace and learn from the efforts of the library.

Please think green and I will think positive thoughts for the bowl.

Firefox said...

Actually modern sewer systems need large amounts of water flushed down them in order to work properly. If you don't use them they fill up with muck and stop working entirely.

Nevertheless I don't believe we are in any danger of the storm drains plugging up because we have 'gone green' anytime soon.

Thanks for the comment. I just wanted to remind people that Seattle is built on the site of an ancient rain forest and building lovely wooden structures on a site that was a deep rain forest only 300 years ago and then claiming to be 'green' seems just a bit hypocritical to me. The library is a monument and temple to conspicuous government consumption. Though it is a very beautiful building. I hope we get our monies worth and libraries are not entirely obsolete in 20 years due to internet replacement of them.

PS. The roof looks very high maintenance. I have no idea what the lifetime maintenance costs are going to be but I'll bet they are quite high and Ballard will have to foot the bill.

Firefox said...

PPS. By the way why are so afraid to publish a justifiable opinion and then make yourself anonymous?

It's called sniping. Posting and then trying to hide your identity teaches nothing and you learn nothing from it.

Firefox said...

PPPPS. They should install a thatched roof instead of a waterproof 'grass' roof.

Thatch was good enough for my mom and grandparents and my ancestors in England for a thousand years or more. Why not bring back thatch instead of creating a high tek artificial soil system on the roof.