As Seattle grows in population, balancing density with livability is key. To meet this need, the City offers incentive zoning in the High Rise zone, where neighborhood open space is provided for public use, while the developer garners increased building height. The 500 Terry Apartment Building is taking advantage of this incentive. A generous public plaza at the base of the building bridges the corner of Terry and Jefferson and doubles as the entry to the building.
This blending of public and private realms necessitated strategic design moves that welcome the public, while quietly offering night time security for residents of the building. Its design opens widely to those arriving from the corner on Jefferson, while providing residents a smaller, direct route that subtly fits into the overall plan. This playful pattern reflects key elements of the building’s architecture.
Working with the grade of the park, the design builds a grid of striations, or ‘piano keys,’ that echo design cues in the architecture. These keys step down and create a modern parterre (a flat plane of planting), reinforced with rows of low hedges, benches and linear swaths of bright red flowering plants. These striations culminate in a planted living wall focal point, complete with lighting that mimics the paving pattern. The entrance to the building is just one of the linear striations; a distinct entry marker, yet one that blends into the park. This design creates a strong graphic pattern that can be enjoyed from within the park, but also creates a striking image when viewed from the residences above. Surrounding the park and reinforcing the street edge are clusters of multi-stemmed flowering trees, with bio-infiltration in the planter strips and shade trees on the street.
Above the parking podium, a fitness terrace with a child's play structure and extensive dog run are surrounded by stormwater planters to direct rooftop run off. The rooftop features a ten foot wide grass lawn that runs the length of the building as well as a p-patch garden and outdoor hearth.
Read more about the Architecture for this project.