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The Spheres
Inspired by the Victorian conservatories from the golden age of botanical exploration, Amazon’s Spheres offers an innovative workplace typology based in an immersive, nature-rich environment that tests the limits of biophilic design for interior landscapes. 

Community Centered Design

The Garfield Super Block Coalition is a group of community volunteers that represents various
stakeholders in the Central Area. They formed in order to advocate for improvements to
this site. In addition to being an active gathering space in our community, the Garfield Campus
is an important historical site for the seven distinct cultures that have deep roots in the
neighborhood. As the surrounding neighborhood changes rapidly, this project aims to share and memorialize the stories of these communities. Through art and community engagement, this park will be both an anchor for the past and commitment to a diverse future. We strive to create a place that will celebrate the past, present and future and 
make this site a nucleus for this thriving community. 

Guiding Principles:

  • Celebrate the diverse and rich history of the Central Area through artwork and integrated storytelling.

  • Welcome the neighborhood’s diverse community and all people who are connected to the Central Area.

  • Be built with high-quality and beautiful materials that reflect the value of this park as the town center of the Central Area.
     

 

  • Have garden-like and nature-based experiences with NW native and garden plantings.

  • Include a continuous, generous and accessible walking loop around the park.

  • Provide play and recreation experiences for all ages and abilities.

  • Have ample amenities to support family gatherings, game-time viewing, community events and celebrations.

LOCATION

Seattle, WA

SIZE

1.9 acres

CLIENT

Amazon

STATUS

Completed 2018

PARTNERS

NBBJ Architects

RECOGNITION

2018 GRAY Awards, Landscape category winner; Dezeen Award, Business Building (shortlist); NAIOP WA,  Innovation Award: Office Development; ENR Northwest, Best Projects 2018, Merit Award - Office/Retail/Mixed-Use

What is biophilia?
The idea that humans possess an innate tendency to seek connections with nature and other forms of life. 
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Horticulture Variety

Home to more than 40,000 plants and 400 species, the Spheres is a botanical institution in its own right, emphasizing the conservation of plants from the world's tropical cloud forests. The humid yet cool interior environment is both welcoming and refreshing, inviting extended visits and in-depth exploration of intensive planting displays that include trees as large as 55' tall alongside orchids that fit on a fingertip.

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Art Integration

Art will play a major role in connecting to the seven
cultures that make up the history of the Central Area. The artwork will depict the stories of those cultures and other significant events that happened in the CA.

 

The GSB coalition intends to collaborate with community groups early on so that the art is a unique and integral part of the overall design. Seen as an extension to the murals in Garfield High School, art along the Promenade will tell the history of the Central Area in a chronological way as you move through the site. All the artwork will have site constraints as this project is entirely outdoors. There will be individual and collaborative art pieces.

 

The Coalition is in the process of creating guidelines for how the art will be integrated and how artists will be selected. The Coalition does not intend to initiate a public call for artists, but instead, to work closely with community groups and stakeholders from the seven cultures listed to identify artists. We will also be calling upon the young people of the Central Area to help depict their hopes and dreams for the future.

Learn more about the Garfield Super Block and the GSB Coalition at www.garfieldsuperblock.org.

Art Vision
To engage with the seven different cultural groups that are historically represented in the area, including the (1) Duwamish (2) Jewish (3) Black/African American (4) Japanese (5) Chinese (6) Filipino (7) Italian to create a series of artworks that tell the history of the area and reflect the pride in its cultural background.
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