Ting pavilion repairs under way at Tacoma’s Chinese Reconciliation Park

A delegation from Fuzhou, China, is in Tacoma this month to repair the weathered and damaged Fuzhou Ting in Chinese Reconciliation Park.

The four-acre park, located at 1741 N. Schuster Parkway, overlooks Commencement Bay and commemorates the expulsion of more than 200 Chinese people from their Tacoma homes and businesses on Nov. 3, 1885. Opened in 2011, the park currently includes a garden, winding foot paths, bridge, sea wall, public art, interpretive displays, recreation areas, and the Ting—a 30-foot-by-40-foot ornate pavilion donated by the City of Fuzhou, China, one of Tacoma’s sister cities.

Four volunteers who are specialists in building and repairing Tings arrived in Tacoma on Aug. 14 to repair the roof, restore wooden components that were vandalized, and repaint the structure (see “Fuzhou delegation to repair Ting pavilion at Tacoma’s Chinese Reconciliation Park,” Tacoma Daily Index, Aug. 7, 2015). They plan to be in Tacoma through the middle of next month to complete repairs that are estimated to cost approximately $160,000, according to Chinese Reconciliation Project Foundation President Theresa Pan Hosley.

“I think it’s a combination of graffiti, weather, and when it was first built, we didn’t completely follow the instructions of how to assemble it,” said Hosley during an interview on Tuesday. “That was part of the reason. Now they are trying to do it right so hopefully it will last longer.” While workers climbed scaffolding to make necessary repairs, Hosley pointed out the most visible damage—stone lion statues with broken teeth; a splintered and busted wooden lattice; faded and weather-beaten paint; and missing “flares” on the Ting’s ridge beams. The park remains open to visitors, but the Ting is off-limits and ringed by chain-link fences.

“We are lucky to have them,” said Hosley of the visiting delegation.

Earlier this year, the City awarded a contract to complete the park’s third phase, which will add approximately 30 parking spaces to the existing parking lot, remove approximately 1,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil currently stockpiled on site under the Schuster Parkway Bridge, and add amenities such as signage, a bamboo wall with a Chinese motif, plants, and lighting, according to City staff (see “Contract approved for Tacoma Chinese Reconciliation Park improvements,” Tacoma Daily Index, March 26, 2015).

To read the Tacoma Daily Indexs complete and comprehensive coverage of Tacoma’s Chinese Reconciliation Park, click on the following links:

Todd Matthews is editor of the Tacoma Daily Index, an award-winning journalist, and the author of several books. His journalism is collected online at wahmee.com.