Little Island – ULI Americas Awards for Excellence Finalist
Learn more about 2023 ULI Americas Awards for Excellence Finalist, Little Island (New York, New York).
April 28, 2023
Location: Seattle, Washington
Developers: Fremont Watershed Realty LLC, a partnership of Spear Street Capital, and HessCallahanGrey Group
Designers: Weber Thompson– Architecture, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture and Environmental Graphics
Site Size: 0.3 Acres
Watershed contains six floors of office space, one level of retail, terraces on four levels, 14 vehicle stalls, lockers, showers, and 120 bike racks. Watershed’s glass form sits lightly on a solid base, shifted and recessed, with views oriented towards Lake Union. Enveloped in self-tinting electrochromic glass, it reduces solar heat gain and glare while maintaining daylighting and views. It is topped by a dramatic cantilevered roof, clad in warm cedar, that provides space for an urban apiary and rainwater collection via a cascading sculptural steel art piece conveying captured rainwater to a 20,000-gallon cistern for use in irrigation and toilet flushing. Adjacent, verdant bioswales and terraces stepping down a hillside offer biophilic connections to visitors and tenants while filtering toxic stormwater runoff from the Aurora Bridge overhead.
The main southeast entry features a weathering steel gate with a celestial design inspired by Fremont’s proclamation as the “Center of the Universe.” Folding into a canopy to reveal the 24’ tall semi-covered exterior lobby, this inclusive space for visitors and tenants creates a lively ‘front porch’. It also introduces the water story with an open lightwell and exterior stair connecting all levels of the building to the sky.
Retail space lines the main street frontage with outdoor seating areas adjacent. The site rises steeply up to an alley at the high point which provides access to service areas and parking at Level 3. The covered parking is hidden from view, wrapped in curtain-walled office space facing the view.
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