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A Garden in the Middle of Downtown

September 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Featured

Imagine a typical walk downtown passing building upon building, cars roaring by…  when all of a sudden, you come upon a huge wave of greenery and dazzling mirrors with the sounds of water raining through glass, welcoming you to an oasis of nature and light.

Sheraton_Garden_Walk_GGN for stroupe news

Courtesy of Gustafson Guthrie Nichol

Your oasis is scheduled to appear in the spring of 2011.

The Sheraton Seattle Hotel , already an award winner in green-inspired hospitality, is literally turning greener.  They are hard at work transforming their 7th Avenue walkway into a $2 million “Garden Walk”. The plans are for this currently blank wall to sport a thick carpet of lush, climbing vines. Large-scale mirrors, set to reflect the historic façade of the Eagles Temple Building and the Washington State Convention Center across the street, will also be positioned to show movement and color, creating the illusion of a constantly changing space.

And just when you think that’s enough, it gets better.  Anchoring the corner of 7th Avenue and Union Street will be a 27-foot kinetic water feature.  Celebrated glass artist Ginny Ruffner’s sculpture, “An Urban Garden”, plans to blend in harmoniously with Garden Walk while also creating a “wow” factor as you enter downtown Seattle from I-5.

The Garden Walk is being designed by award-winning Gustafson Guthrie Nichol, landscape architects whose work can be found locally, across the country, and worldwide.  Current Seattle projects also include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Campus, as well as the University of Washington School of Medicine. GGN was gracious in spending a little time with us, and they also provided the artist’s rendering you see here.

The Sheraton Seattle is located at 1400 Sixth Avenue at Union Street, within walking distance of Union Square. In 2009, it earned the Good Earthkeeping Award in the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s “Large Property” category, and is considered to be one of the top ten green hotels in the country by Mother Nature Network.

We’ll keep you posted as the Garden Walk progresses.