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King County Parks has evolved from 150 acres in 1938 to more than 28,000 acres today. Our mission is to steward, enhance and acquire parks to inspire healthy communities. Per the 2002 business plan, which re-shaped the way Parks does business, we seek to cultivate strong relationships with non-profit, corporate and community partner to enhance park amenities for King County residents while while reducing costs.

King County Parks is largely funded through a property tax levy, which the voters of King County approved on August 6, 2013 by more than 70 percent. The Parks, Trails, and Open Space Replacement Levy will generate an estimated $66 million per year from 2014 through 2019 through a CPI-indexed property tax levy lid lift of 18.77 cents per $1,000 of assessed value – an estimated $56 per year for the owner of a home valued at $300,000. It replaced two parks levies, the King County Parks Levy and the Open Space and Trails Levy, which expired at the end of 2013.

Today, our system consists of more than 200 parks175 miles of regional trails, and 215 miles of backcountry trails. From regional treasures such as Marymoor Park and Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park to amenities such as athletic fields, regional trails, and pools, there is something for everyone in King County Parks. Learn more about open space in King County - read the King County Open Space Plan: Parks, Trails, and Natural Areas (2016).

We hope you enjoy your time in King County's award-winning parks!


Mission

Steward, enhance and acquire parks to inspire healthy communities.

Vision

Parks, trails, and natural lands for all, sustained with the cooperative efforts of our community.

Values

Regional and Rural Services: Provide park and recreation assets that serve the county-wide population, as well as communities in rural unincorporated King County.

Safety: Ensure that parks, trails and recreation facilities are safe for all users.

Partnerships: Pursue partnerships with public, private, and non-profit entities that leverage public dollars, enhance public recreation opportunities, and involve King County residents in the stewardship of King County’s open space and recreation assets.

Entrepreneurial: Generate revenue and contribute to the financial sustainability of agency operations.

Conservation: Protect and enhance the ecological values of open space assets, including fish and wildlife habitat, native biodiversity, critical areas, and air and water quality.

Equity: Strive to provide public open spaces and recreation opportunities that maximize accessibility and are equitably distributed.

Efficiency: Maximize the value of public dollars through sensible cost reduction strategies while respecting best environmental management practices.


Awards and Recognition

 

  • 2014, 2015, 2016 - Marymoor Park, Best Dog Park, King 5 - Best of Western Washington 
  • 2013, Savvy Award - "Little Footprint, Big Forest" Camping Cargotainer Design Competition, City-County Communications and Marketing Association
  • 2009, Certificate of Excellence - Movies@Marymoor Redmond Summer Nights Partnership, Public Relations Society of America - Puget Sound Chapter
  • 2009, Spotlight Award, Best Park of Trail map - Regional Trails in King County Map, Washington Parks and Recreation Association
  • 2009, Spotlight Award, Best sports complex - Marymoor Park synthetic turf ballfield conversion, Washington Parks and Recreation Association 
  • 2008, KUDOS Marketing and Communication Award, National Recreation & Parks Association
  • 2008, Certificate of Excellence - White Center Heights Ultimate Park Makeover, Public Relations Society of America - Puget Sound Chapter
  • 2006, Center for Sustainable Communities Award, National Association of Counties
  • 2006, Public-Private Partnership Award, Performance Institute - National Council for Excellence in Government
  • 2004, Achievement Award - Parks Business Plan, National Association of Counties