Washington Park officials ask visitors to use shuttle due to loss of parking spots


Visitors heading to Washington Park this summer may want to take the shuttle since a major construction project there means parking spots will be at a premium.

While people may have taken the shuttle in the park before, the service is now expanding to help alleviate the crunch with construction.

Riders can catch the shuttle at the Washington Park MAX station. It will stop at every attraction in the park, including the Japanese and Rose test gardens, the memorials for Vietnam veterans and the Holocaust, Hoyt Arboretum and an archery range.

The best part is that the shuttle is free and runs daily every 15 minutes from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The Portland Water Bureau is building a massive reservoir in the park, and the project is eliminating more than 200 of the parks roughly 1,200 parking spots. Bureau officials said the parking loss couldn’t be avoided and that the project is desperately needed to update the city’s infrastructure.

“The new seismically sound reservoir at Washington Park has the critical role of providing water to the west side, even after a major earthquake,” Portland Water Bureau spokesperson Jaymee Cuti explained.

The reservoir is expected to be finished in 2023, including a two-year stop in construction to allow the ground to settle. At that point, a reflecting pool will be built on top of the reservoir for visitors to enjoy.

Summer is already the busiest time in the park, and this year Portland Parks and Rec is expecting record attendance because of other events.

“Record attendance is expected this summer season with the opening of the Oregon Zoo’s Education Center, Portland Japanese Garden’s Cultural Crossing and the 100th anniversary of the Rose Garden,” executive director of Explore Washington Park Heather McCarey said. “We want everyone to enjoy the attractions that Washington Park has to offer without the hassle of driving and parking.”

For more on the shuttle service and other information on Washington Park, visit ExploreWashingtonPark.com.

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