Northwood Elementary School


Featuring an expansive central courtyard and scaled-down spaces to fit students, this 77,000 square-foot elementary school is the first new school on Mercer Island in 53 years. The innovative design encourages collaboration and flexible use of spaces with 20 general-purpose classrooms, two developmental preschool classrooms and eight shared learning areas. Extensive day lighting is enabled by full-height windows and clerestory window mullions, as well as an open framing layout at the Commons that aligns columns and roof framing. This project received the 2016 Honor Award from AIA Seattle and was lauded by the jury as “masterful in terms of thinking about how children learn and play.”It has also received a 2017 Polished Apple Merit Award from A4LE Washington, a 2017 Award of Excellence from the AIA Committee on Architecture for Education, and a 2017 Citation Award from the AIA Washington's Civic Design Awards.

photography by Benjamin Benschneider Photography