Sunset Substation Park
Seattle’s network of obsolete, decommissioned electrical substations could become a network of neighborhood friendly, solar powered pocket parks, capable of generating more than a MegaWatt hour of solar power in Seattle per year.
Sunset Substation Park prototype was designed with community input, and set to be carbon neutral, have net zero water use and meet the Living Building Challenge’s stringent sustainable building standard.
Sunset Substation Park features a 32 kW solar canopy shading a large play area and a sculptural landscape element, nicknamed the ‘Wedge.’
The Wedge is covered in shade loving plantings, similar to the understory of a mature Northwest forest.
Hidden within the Wedge, there is an Emergency Relief Center, in case of disaster, and the equipment for the solar canopy. The rammed earth walls of the Wedge act as a backdrop for a outdoor gathering space for public education about the potential of renewable energy.
By using a site the City already owns, this project keeps public lands public, provides much needed open space for the neighborhood, helps keep Seattle on the forefront of renewable energy generation, and supports Washington’s fledgling solar industry.