When downtown’s Waterfront Park opened nine years ago, it made a big splash with locals. Today, it’s in the mist of an update — the ongoing Waterfront Park Active Recreation project. This will introduce new recreational spaces and amenities to a 1.5-acre portion of the popular park along the Embarcadero.
What’s the plan?
Construction crews are currently working at the northeast corner along West Grape Street and Pacific Highway, so expect detours. This space previously housed decorative gardens and paths, but was used less than other park spaces.
San Diego’s Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) hosted public meetings and collected feedback to develop a plan to transform the area. Crews recently broke ground, and when the project is completed, additions will include:
- Basketball courts
- Pickleball courts
- A dog park with agility equipment and off-leash spaces
- A T-ball field with 100-meter foul lines
- Outdoor fitness equipment and a table tennis area
- ADA-compliant paths, walkways, and benches
When will it reopen?
According to the DPR website, the new amenities are expected to open by the end of the year. They will be free to use and follow the same hours as the rest of the park: 6 a.m.-10 p.m.
Currently, the playground equipment in the southeast portion of the park and all fountains remain open to the public, unaffected by the construction.
What will go away?
This project aims to retain as many trees as possible, but 11 will be removed — though more native plants will be added. The new construction mostly replaces grassy areas, but the 12-acre Waterfront Park still has plenty of open, green space in its northwest and southwest portions.
Existing paths will also be retained, as will the “Arbre de Serpents” sculpture by Niki de Saint Phalle.