Herzog & de Meuron Basel Ltd.
4056 Basel, Switzerland
Phone: +41 61 385 5757
Seattle, Washington, USA
The Belltown project, located in the historical Seattle neighborhood of the same name, is an 11-storey mixed use building containing nine floors of residential units hovering above an actively programmed ground floor with retail spaces, various health and wellness uses, communal working spaces, a restaurant, kiosks and a coffee shop. The project operates at the scale of the street, the block and the neighborhood offering urban connections for residents and the community at large.
The building responds to its context with two distinct facades.
On First Avenue a classically arranged copper and glass volume relates to its adjacent brick neighbors, the Hull Building and the Glaser Building. At the pedestrian level, two curved vitrines provide a continuous active street front and mark the entry point of a public laneway leading to the rear alley.
The rear façade is composed with the identical architectural elements and material palette of the front façade, but its overall geometry progressively steps back giving all residents an uninterrupted view out to Elliot Bay. The resulting stepped, crescent-shaped volume brings light and air to a large planted terrace, the public laneway and the alley below.
The project’s side walls step up in height from the Hull and Glazer buildings; clad with pigmented grooved mineral panels, they create an expanse of texture reminiscent of the brick party walls prevalent throughout Belltown and Seattle’s downtown, where city blocks are often composed of structures of various heights.
From afar, the building’s silhouette can be perceived as either a singular volume or as a series of slender stepped elements.
Herzog & de Meuron, 2021