ARC Architects held the second of three open houses last week to develop a plan for the new Mountlake Terrace City Hall.
The bond measure passed in November 2017 is for $12.5 million. The estimated size of the new building is 18,000 square feet, which will include city offices, council chambers and lobby space. Additionally, the Mountlake Terrace police station will be expanded by 3,000 square feet.
The design process for the new City Hall began with an open house in April, where ARC Architects asked for generic ideas of what the structure should look like and features it should contain.
Then, on July 11, Rex Bond and Jeff Wandasiewicz, both of ARC Architects, presented two building options with different features. Attendees were asked their opinions for which features of each building worked, and which did not. Feedback from this meeting will be used to create one final design, which will be presented during a third open house in October and later finalized. Construction is expected to begin next summer.
Both options presented on July 11 have the same square footage and would be expected to cost about the same amount. The both feature a staff area, a lobby area and a council chambers. However, they are set up in different ways and have different aesthetic features.
For example, Scheme A has two entrances for the lobby area, one facing south into the parking lot and one facing north toward 232nd Street Southwest. Scheme B has just one lobby entrance, off the east, which faces what is expected to eventually become a public gathering space. Where the second entrance is on Scheme A, Scheme B has an option for a window, which could look out to a potential public art piece or planter, for example.
Council chambers on Scheme A face north, where they face east on Scheme B. This also allows an opportunity for large doors into the future public gathering area to make the area an indoor/outdoor space for events.
Scheme A has a lofted second story in the staff area, allowing for diagonally pitched sloping roofs. Scheme B has a completely two-story staff area, so the roofs are pitched in a more traditional fashion.
Both schemes have wood features and lots of windows.
Though the project does include a police station expansion, design concepts so far do not include this part of the project. According to Bond, they are working with the police department to determine how to best meet their needs in the space before designing the expansion. The style and structure of the expansion will be informed by the style of the new City Hall, Bond said.
–Story and photos by Natalie Covate