Ballard Locks botanical gardens to reopen on Wednesday

The Ballard Locks gardens are reopening tomorrow morning, but the pedestrian bridge over the lock will remain closed until further notice.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that the Carl S. English Jr. Botanical Garden will open at 10am on Oct. 7. However, all facilities —the visitor’s center, restrooms, pedestrian bridge, and fish ladder viewing area—will remain closed. Visitors will be required to wear masks and practice social distancing.

The Army Corps says the garden opening is part of their multi-step reopening plan.

“We are pleased to welcome visitors back to the botanical garden,” Seattle District Commander Col. Alexander L. Bullock said in a statement. “We understand how important the locks are to the community as a recreation area and a commuter passageway. We look forward to restoring full public access as conditions allow.”

The gardens will only be accessible via the north gate during this stage of the reopening. The Army Corps says they will “monitor local conditions” and reopen more of the locks’ property when the risk of COVID-19 transmission drops further in Seattle.

“We understand the community is looking forward to the time when we can reopen both gates and allow commuters to use the bridges,” Operations Project Manager Jon Hofstra said. “We hope the COVID-19 conditions continue to improve so we can do so when it is safe for our visitors and small crew of employees.”

The Army Corps has kept the locks property closed to ensure the safety of essential workers. Maritime traffic has not been affected by the precautions.

As a reminder, the large chamber of the locks will be closed from Oct. 15 to Dec. 6 for the next phase of the Stoney Gate Valve Project.

Photo: Ballard Locks on Facebook

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