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  • Ellen Mirro

Design Approved for the Lake Union Steam Plant

Congratulations to the team at CollinsWoerman architects on their successful Certificate of Approval for a garage building at the Landmarked Lake Union Steam Plant. For the past two years, Studio TJP has served as landmarks consultant, helping CollinsWoerman through the process of getting the COA, which is a go-ahead from the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board to make changes to a designated City landmark.

The Lake Union Steam Plant, constructed in 1914, was designed by Daniel Huntington for Seattle City Light. An example of early 20th Century Industrial Modernism, the plant is an iconic sight whether driving on I-5, boating on Lake Union, or looking across from Westlake. (Those of us who frequently drove between north Seattle and downtown in the eighties and nineties indelibly remember it as the ZymoGenetics building.) In 2018, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center leased the building, thus expanding their laboratory and office space by 100,000 square feet. The Hutch will be using this space to combine immunotherapy and data science to research personalized cancer therapies.

Prior to the COVID-19 public health crisis, the CollinsWoerman team had successfully completed their COA application, briefed the Landmarks Preservation Board, and presented to the Architectural Review Committee. The team was fortunate to be chosen by the Department of Neighborhoods as the first applicant to present at the first virtual Landmarks Preservation Board Hearing on July 1, 2020. At the hearing, the Board noted the design’s success and the attention paid to the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Historic Preservation. The new design incorporates a two-story parking garage and relaxing green space to the north of the steam plant building. We were delighted to hear the design praised as improving the site while supporting the existing landmark.

Congratulations to CollinsWoerman design team members James Walker, Joe Workman, and Austin Kovach for a job well done. We were honored to be part of your team!

Top image courtesy of CollinsWoerman

Lake Union Steam Plant, ca. 1930. Photo: Seattle Municipal Archives.

1921. Photo: Seattle Municipal Archives.

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