The park

artists rendering of park map
Click for larger version
 

Park legend

  1. Tanana Chiefs honoring circle
  2. Women’s honoring circle
  3. Alaska Native peoples honoring wall
  4. Animal and seasons recognition at cardinal directions
  5. Veterans honoring circle
  6. Women’s circle
  7. Tea-making fire
  8. Gathering circle
  9. Indigenous cultural studies center
  10. Amphitheater/fire
  11. Ski/trail center (future)
  12. Picnic area
  13. East-west campus path
  14. Welcome areas - N, E, S, W
  15. Interpretive entry
  16. Entry from museum
  17. Interpretive trail
  18. Relocated blockhouse
  19. Forest habitat buffer planting
  20. Large-area planting of berries and herbaceous plants throughout the park
  21. Viewing deck
 

Park location map
Troth Yeddha' Location map. Click to view enlarged version.
The drive to establish Troth Yeddha’ Park began in 2002. The university picked the area between the UA Museum of the North and the Reichardt Building as an ideal location. The UA Board of Regents approved the park in 2008.
 
In 2010, the architectural firm Jones & Jones and a UAF committee developed a detailed plan for the park. An update in 2014 completed a concept design for the indigenous studies center.
 
The park and center will carry the vision forward through design elements:
 
  • Welcoming circles — Athabascan culture values the honoring and welcoming of others. The park plan reflects this with welcoming circles, featuring exhibits and seating, at each main entrance point.

    At the center of the park will be an honoring circle dedicated to tribal leaders who have provided direction and cultural continuity for their people.
     
  • Native plants — Much of the park remains covered in natural vegetation, but it will host native plants that provide valuable raw materials for the traditional Athabascan technology and diet. The trees and other plants will define park spaces and trails, which will “evoke a riverine landscape where ribbons or bands of vegetation meander across the site, much like ribbon marshes or braid-bars in a river basin,” the plan describes.
     
  • Site art — The park’s prominent spot on campus makes it an ideal place “for an art piece that embodies the sun, wind, water, and spirit of the Native world,” the planners suggest.
     
  • Building form — Alaska’s villages, waters and mountains inspired the indigenous studies center’s design. Enclosing more than 30,000 square feet, the center will hold gathering and performing spaces, classrooms, labs, a library, art spaces, a meeting room and offices.

World-renowned architect Johnpaul Jones was a lead design architect on the National Museum of the American Indian, which opened in 2004 as part of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. He brings an extensive history of working with indigenous people to create culturally meaningful spaces.

The Troth Yeddha’ Legacy envisions a place singularly focused on Alaska’s first peoples. That place will create a physical sense of belonging for Alaska Native students and visitors, while welcoming people of all cultures.

 

Artists rendering of the park

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