Geekwire featured the new Facebook Arbor Blocks project in South Lake Union. The HEWITT landscape studio designed the new Salmon-Safe 8th Avenue woonerf, as well as the roof level terraces for 1,000+ office workers.
Excerpt from Geekwire article Facebook opens another Seattle building with room for 1,000 people, adding to huge engineering hub:
“Teams have begun moving into a building called Arbor Blocks 300, a six-story building with 196,000 square feet of office space at 300 Eighth Ave. N. in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood, the company said. The office, which sits in the heart of Amazon’s campus, is part of the new two-building Arbor Blocks complex that Facebook leased from the late Paul Allen’s Vulcan. The other building, a 189,000-square-foot structure, will open in the next few months with room for another 1,000 employees.”
“This office will support Facebook’s growth in Seattle and help us attract people from the region’s tech community,” Vijaye Raji, head of Facebook’s Seattle office and the company’s vice president of entertainment said in a statement. “As we continue to grow here, we remain committed to being a good neighbor and having a positive impact on the community.”Geekwire
Read more about the HEWITT landscape studio’s work on Arbor Blocks
At the center of a four-block-segment between Denny Park and Mercer Street, a mature tree canopy and low traffic volume created an opportunity for public space between the Arbor Blocks buildings – home to new offices in South Lake Union for Facebook.
The 8th Avenue roadway width was minimized to prioritize pedestrian and bike use of the open space to create a woonerf – soon to be Seattle’s first Salmon-Safe woonerf. The road alignment has a gentle “wiggle” – both to give automobile drivers a sense that this is a place where they are not the priority and to create two public plaza spaces. A primary hardscape plaza takes advantage of southwest sunny exposure to create an open plaza space filled with sculptural seating beneath the preserved sweet gum trees. A secondary plaza, in the form of a deck surrounded by lush vegetation, sits farther north in shady contrast.
The western building has bioretention cells cascading along its north and south frontages, while the eastern building opens up pocket seating areas – breadcrumbs along the Lake to Bay Trail. Both buildings have lower level and roof level terraces designed to balance lush plantings with highly functional outdoor workspace for Facebook employees.