Seattle’s eastside has been rapidly expanding beyond the traditionally car-centric suburban hub. The Spring District, located at the south end of Bellevue in the “Bel-Red Corridor,” is the most recent area to transform from an industrial past into a vibrant urban neighborhood. GGLO has been involved in the design of a variety of projects, including the visioning for the overall Spring District placemaking and planning, followed by two residential communities, and a brew pub/office complex for the local tech workforce.
Sparc, the first multifamily community, initiated the link of the Spring District to downtown Bellevue. The five-building complex was designed to provide a public community connection via the bike and pedestrian-friendly hill climb stair into the SPARC’s central plaza. The plaza provides a buzz of activity that includes a café lounge, gym, day care, and access to the leasing office. Integrated art provides a whimsical air to the variable height buildings. Vertical elements created a backdrop to the park and are both architectural focal points and wayfinding cues inspired by historical spires.
Another GGLO project, The Spring District Brewery and Office, is a central watering hole for area with office floors above and parking sited underneath the adjacent public plaza. The decidedly modern exterior of the building is simple and refined, announcing itself as something unique. Design moves and materials are both elegant and down to earth, a nod to the area’s industrial past. Landscaping respects the building’s purpose and connects it to the adjacent public plaza. A hop wall lines the pedestrian corridor leading to the brewery and the beer garden enhances the building, providing an unpretentious space to enjoy a cold one outside with friends.
GGLO also designed AMLI Spring District, a multifamily development west of the brew pub. Because this property sits on the edge of the district with a face fronting into the district and another viewing Downtown Bellevue, the design uses the concept of yin and yang to inform massing and emphasize its different but compatible faces. Exterior finishes artfully juxtapose dark and light. Interior amenities use the concepts of fray (for gathering), forum (for work), fusion (for exploration), balance (for restoration) and module (for fitness) to both distinguish and connect communal spaces for virtually every part of a resident’s day. Courtyard and rooftop outdoor spaces complete amenity offerings and feature the same warm wood and perforated panels found in indoor amenities, thus unifying these disparate spaces.