Did you know that it takes less than half an hour to walk from the Eastside or the Westside to the center of Downtown?
Walking in Olympia is the simplest, smartest way to get around. It's fun, good for the environment, builds community, keeps neighborhoods safe, saves you money, and best of all it relieves stress and keeps you fit! Use the maps or links below and get out and walk today!
Olympia Walk Map
Check out the City's Walk Map which includes trails, landmarks, public art and more. Please note, this is a big file.
You can also pick up a paper copy of the map at City Hall during business hours. If you'd like one mailed to you, please email Michelle Swanson with your name and address.
Crossing Facts and Tips
Crosswalks exist at every intersection, whether they are marked or not, and you can cross mid-block between two intersections where no signals are present - just be sure to yield to traffic.
It is illegal to cross mid-block between two intersections that have signals. Walk to the signal and cross there.
When driving, make sure you scan for people on foot at intersections. Be especially mindful when you're turning right, because you're usually looking left and can easily miss someone crossing in front of you.
For more information about crossings and other walking safety tips, click here.
Building Streets for Pedestrians
Learn more about Olympia's long-term plans to build sidewalks.
At certain locations, improvements help pedestrians cross safely. Learn more about our Pedestrian Crossing Improvement Program.
Great Places to Walk
Tours, Trails and More
Below are some of our favorite places to walk. You can also see a complete listing of City of Olympia Parks and Trails. For other local area park and trail information visit Thurston County Parks, Lacey Parks or Tumwater Parks.
Neighborhood pathways are short connections for bicyclists and pedestrians that link streets to parks, schools and other streets where no motor vehicle connection exists.
These pathways enhance mobility for bicyclists and pedestrians by shortening trip lengths and providing more comfortable off-street route alternatives.
Neighborhood groups and service organizations can apply for funding to improve a pathway in their neighborhood with the Neighborhood Pathways Program.
Keep Sidewalks Clear
Keeping sidewalks clear and in good repair is vital to creating walkable neighborhoods. You can help by:
Keeping sidewalks clear of obstructions (Flyer, PDF)
Trimming overgrown bushes and trees
Host a Clear Sidewalks Work Party
Create 7' of clear space - About the width of the sidewalk
Properly dispose of leaves and debris
Gather your neighbors and tackle vegetation growth together. This is also a great way to help neighbors who may not be able to trim their own vegetation. If you belong to a neighborhood or homeowners association, they may be able to help organize a party. Here are a few suggestions:
- Choose an event coordinator to communicate with residents and the City.
- Send an email announcement 2 to 3 weeks prior to the event.
- Ask permission prior to trimming others' vegetation.
- Choose a central gathering place for the day of your work party. If you have funds available, consider providing snacks and drinks for your volunteers. This can entice more people to attend.
- Ask participants to bring tools (clippers, loppers, rakes, etc.) and their own safety equipment (gloves, eye protection, etc.)
- Have fun!
Prevent the Spread of Noxious Weeds
It is illegal to rake or dump leaves and yard debris in Olympia streets and rights of way. Leaves and other yard debris that are raked or blown into the street can become contaminated with oil and other substances. Once contaminated, leaves collected by the street sweeper can’t be composted and must be taken to the landfill, a costly method of disposal.
Residents have a variety of options for composting leaves and other yard debris. Thank you for helping to keep our streets clean and composting responsibly.
Noxious weeds threaten public health, the environment, wildlife habitat, native plants, agriculture areas, and our recreational areas. The City of Olympia is required by the State to address the noxious weeds in the City’s right of way when identified by Thurston County. Public Works staff tries to pull weeds whenever feasible. Unfortunately, some noxious weeds must be sprayed to be eliminated. When pulling is not effective, staff uses the the most environmentally friendly products possible. It is important to note that the City does NOT manage noxious weeds on private property.
The most common types of noxious weed are poison hemlock, Japanese knotweed and common fennel. More information and a complete listing can be found on the Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board.
City code requires the property owner to repair the sidewalk adjacent to their property (OMC 12.36.010).
For more information, contact Code Enforcement staff at 360.753.8487.
Contact Michelle Swanson, AICP, Senior Program Specialist, at 360.753.8575 or firstname.lastname@example.org