A closer look at Rooftop Garden at the Lucille on Roosevelt, one of two finalists in the 2021 GRAY Awards Residential Landscape Design category.
Rooftop Garden at the Lucille on Roosevelt
Atop the Lucille apartments in Seattle, an unlikely oasis thrives. But, “rooftop deck” hardly does this verdant, richly designed space justice. Its unique positioning brings elements of the building’s strong urban presence into harmony with a relaxing natural environment. Without sacrificing either, the Board & Vellum team worked with the client to create a truly enjoyable outdoor amenity space not often seen in a multifamily environment—a space residents inhabit regularly, becoming an actual part of their lives long after the obligatory leasing tour.
On the building's roof, the hard angles of the architecture below are reframed in the greenery of beachy plantings. Lush flowers cascade from their boxes amid beach grasses, shrubs, and native trees, both coniferous and deciduous. Plantings were carefully selected to withstand the occasionally stressful conditions of a rooftop environment, where space to grow is limited and exposure to the elements is high. Even the shore pines and western hemlocks will thrive in the bonsai-like conditions, adapting to make the best use of the resources available.
To accommodate the larger-than-typical amounts of soil, plantings, and large driftwood accents that were required to create this fertile retreat, the building’s structural design was enhanced to support the additional load, enabling it to rise to the level of “roof garden,” more than the standard “roof decks” of typical multifamily buildings. The material selection itself — a little natural, a little industrial — speaks to the celebrated intersection where human intervention meets the organic variation of the natural world.
Zack Thomas, PLA LEED AP ND, Landscape Architecture Lead
Derek Reeves, Site Design Team
Jeff Pelletier, AIA, CPHC, Architecture Lead & Principal
The Lucille on Roosevelt was built by W.G. Clark.
Landscape contracting by SS Landscaping.
Planting design and consultation by Withey Price.
Photography: Andrew Giammarco
Date of Completion: January 2019
Additional Landscape Design, Residential finalist:
Check out the Quick List to see all of the 2021 GRAY Awards finalists!
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