The Living Building Pilot Program is part of the City of Seattle’s Climate Strategies. It helps us move beyond making incremental changes so we can fundamentally reshape our building and transportation systems for a clean energy future.
The Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections (SDCI) is excited to announce the Watershed building in Fremont is our third Living Building Pilot building to successfully complete the pilot program green building requirements. The Watershed building recently received Petal Certification from the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) and met the requirements to reduce energy and water use. Only two other pilot projects have successfully completed the process—the Bullitt Center and Stone 34.
Located at 900 N 34th Street in Seattle, Watershed is a 72,400 square foot, seven-story, commercial office and retail building in the Fremont neighborhood designed by Weber Thompson. It received Petal Certification for Materials, Place, and Beauty. The energy use was measured for 12-months using the Target Performance Pathway in the Seattle Energy Code. The building used 67% less energy than a baseline office building and far exceeds the 25% energy reduction required by the pilot program.
“The Watershed building is an excellent model for how new construction can achieve the ambitious climate goals of the Living Building Pilot Program in Seattle,” said Nathan Torgelson, Director of SDCI. “Priority permit facilitation and increased design flexibility for these projects are added incentives of program participation and we look forward to continued interest from the development community.”
Watershed’s most notable accomplishment is how the project addressed water by capturing rainwater for use inside the building and collecting stormwater from the site and the adjacent Aurora Bridge. The water story is communicated through the architecture, landscaping, educational signage, and is the catalyst for a multi-phase stormwater cleanup called the Aurora Bridge Swales project, which treats up to two million gallons of highly toxic runoff annually from the bridge before entering Lake Union.
The Living Building Pilot program provides projects with additional height and floor area in exchange for meeting rigorous program requirements that include ambitious energy and water reductions, and Living Building Challenge Petal Certification.
Currently, SDCI has 16 projects enrolled, including commercial, multifamily, and senior living developments. Four more enrollments are available before we reach the 20-pilot project limit set by City ordinance. The current economic climate may impact the viability of some projects enrolled which may allow for additional project capacity. Eight of the enrolled projects are under permit review, four are under construction, one in its performance period, and one in early design.
For more information on the Watershed project, read:
- Watershed fulfills Seattle’s Living Building Pilot Program goals with proven performance
- International Living Future Institute’s Watershed case study
If you are interested in participating or want more information about the Living Building Pilot program, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or Jess Harris, SDCI Green Building Program Manager at email@example.com.