Park Features

Park Tavern/Restaurant Café

A large, light soaked Pavilion with outdoor café seating on the southern block adjacent to the ice-skating path will serve meals throughout the day. The Pavilion will be LEED Gold certified and will demonstrate innovative green building systems (see Sustainability section for more details).

Ice Skating

During the winter, an ice path will meander through the Park recalling frozen canals of northern Europe and perhaps the Washington Canal itself, as historical records suggest that ice-skating occurred on the Tiber Creek in winter during the 19th century. Visitors can rest in the Pavilion and sip hot chocolate while watching skaters pass by.

Water Features

Canal Park will have two monumental water features/fountains. A large, interactive water fountain with programmable water jets embedded below the paving surface anchors the southern end of the Park. Children will be able to run through the fountain during the summer months, and when the fountain is turned off, the space it occupies can be used as a performance area or as a seasonal plants display during the winter months.

In the middle block, a monumental fountain 20 feet wide and 135 feet long sits in the same linear path as the rain garden. The fountain will operate 365 days/year and at its southern end, the water will cascade down an inclined scrim surface. The middle block Pavilion hovers above this plane of cascading water.

Art and Sculpture

Artist, David Hess, has designed a series of interactive sculptural elements to be located on each of the Park's three blocks. In addition, a large cube with translucent polycarbonate panels on the roof of the main Pavilion will become a medium for projection art and light displays.

Child/Family Features

Canal Park will be a destination for the whole family with activities such as ice skating in winter, enjoying a meal at the café, jumping through the water fountains and playing with/on interactive sculpture in the Park's flexible spaces with park-provided toys and games.

Lawns/ Flexible Programmed Space

Flexible spaces throughout the park, including the large green on the north block will be used for a variety of programs / events. CPDA, in partnership with the Capital Riverfront Business Improvement District, will host numerous events and celebrations throughout the year including, movies, concerts, holiday and seasonal festivals, farmers markets, art expositions, games, educational and environmental programming, storytelling events, and much more. Check our events page for current information about events.


LEED/Sustainable Sites Initiative Certification.

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Design Team

OLIN led a multidisciplinary team on consultants in the creation of this catalytic urban park.

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Developer/Funding Partners

Government of the District of Columbia, Vincent Gray, Mayor

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Park Map

Find your way around our points of interest.

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