Seattle Public Library-South Park Branch

Seattle, Washington

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Material elements such as industrial iron, glass, timber, and water are interwoven with native wetland grasses and Western plant species.  A central grove of quaking aspen and a simple grouping of salvaged timber benches anchor the small plaza space at the library’s entrance.

A meandering stream of recycled glass paving remembers the forms of the historical Duwamish River, reflecting the ways in which the river has been manipulated and will continue to change by the hand of man.  Recurring woven forms and historical images, projected onto the library’s façade by a local artist, recall the patterns of human habitation on the site.

Within the site, plantings inhabit gaps and spaces in the hardscape to reflect the fragmented wetland landscape of the area.  An ecoroof of sedums and native wildflowers help to mitigate stormwater and reduce heating and cooling loads on site.  The plant palette consists of hardy, drought-tolerant, and primarily native species.