Washington Square Water Conservation Project

Park is closed for renovation through end of 2019

We expect to begin the construction of the Washington Square Water Conservation project in early May.

The SF Recreation & Park Department is pleased to announce the upcoming construction for Washington Square Water Conservation Project. The project includes replacement of the park’s existing irrigation system to conserve 2.2 million gallons of water per year, and will address saturated soil conditions on the main lawn and replace the aging pathways.

Closure Details:

  • The Children’s Playground will remain open during construction
  • The Restroom will remain open during construction with periodic restroom closures to accommodate replacement of park pathways.
  • Anticipated closure duration – 6 months

Please visit one of the following alternate Parks during the short closure and don’t forget to shop local!

Washington Square Map of business district and surround parks

Background Project Information

In 2012 the Recreation and Park Department partnered with the SF Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to develop a Parks Water Conservation Plan for twelve parks with the greatest potential for water savings. Of the twelve parks surveyed, Washington Square was the highest user of water on an annual per-acre basis. Other parks in the program include Balboa Park, Buena Vista Park, Stern Grove, GGP Panhandle, Larsen Ball Fields, Junipero Serra Playground, Parkside Square, Marina Green, GGP Big Rec, St. Mary’s Park, and James Rolph Park.

Washington Square contains 1.5 acres of irrigated lawn and garden, and current irrigation water use is approximately 3,300,000 gallons/year. The project scope will replace the antiquated 65 year old irrigation system. It is estimated the project will conserve 2,223,753 gallons of potable water annually – reducing annual water use by two-thirds. In addition to the PUC Large Landscape Grant, the department has secured funding to fully replace the park’s sub-drain infrastructure to address frequently saturated lawn and other site drainage issues.

Site Plan for Washington Square Water Conservation Project

Project Scope

  1. Reduce existing water use by two-thirds; from 3 million gal./yr. to 1 million gal./yr.
  2. Install a weather sensing irrigation system
  3. Plant new drought tolerant landscaping
  4. Install new sub-drain infrastructure to reduce saturated soil conditions on site
  5. Pathway repaving and ADA improvements

Project Funding Sources

SFPUC Large Landscape Grant Program: $625,700
City’s General Fund secured by Supervisor Aaron Peskin: $1,400,000
Rec & Park 2012 Park Bond Water Conservation Program: $1,025,700
Total Fund Sources: $3,051,400

Anticipated Timeline

Construction is planned to start June 2019 – anticipated park closure is 6 months.

Washington Square Irrigation Project Closure MapIf you have questions or comments about the project, please contact the project manager at: levi.conover@sfgov.org.

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