Dawson Park

Dawson Park has been an integral social hub for Portland’s African American community in Northeast Portland. Since it’s establishment in 1921, many noteworthy events have taken place in the park, such as a campaign visit by Robert Kennedy in 1968, a major march protesting the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968, and civil rights rallies and protests throughout the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.

Working with a local historian, 2.ink Studio developed a plan that integrates the rich history of surrounding communities with design components that reinvigorate the function of this community park. The design features a generous lawn area in the center of the park for summer concerts, new cross circulation that activates the corners of the park, and a hardscape plaza that includes an interactive water feature that will help bring families to the park. Perennial beds brighten the pathways on the east side and provide yearlong attraction and color. New benches, picnic tables, and updated playground and seating complete the design. 2.ink Studio is working with local artist Isaka Shamsud-Din to design a low fence that surrounds the playground.


  • 2014 Oregon ASLA Merit Award + People’s Choice Award
  • Location: Portland, OR
  • Client: Portland Parks & Recreation