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Ebey Waterfront Park

city of marysville

Starting as a vision of city leaders in the 1940s, Ebey Waterfront Park is a 5.4-acre intertidal marine park that provides access to boaters anglers, and hunters, while also serving as a catlyst project for downtown revitalization. The site was flat and without any distinguishable natural features. Hence the restroom was viewed as an opportunity to introduce a strong visual presence. The park is at Marysville’s prime waterfront location, which the community hoped would become a civic gathering place. A key challenge for this project was to address the demands of a high abuse environment without becoming cold and unapproachable.


The solution was to elevate the level of design beyond merely meeting the functional needs of the program. The shipbuilding history of the site inspires the curved rib forms supporting the shed roof and the horizontal hardwood slat cladding. The spacing between the slats facilitates natural ventilation and reveals the ribbed structure behind. The slats are spaced tighter near the ground to address sight lines. The parallel board-formed concrete walls visually anchor the structure while creating natural entry points at each end. The “woven” metal gates and screens at the end walls provide a counter point to the mass of the concrete, while also serving a security function.

Award: AIA Journal 39 Small Project Practitioner Award, December 2006

“Public restrooms are often so dark, dreary places. Here we have natural light, ventilation, and a handsome building.”

“How to do a lot with a little. Glowing slots of light are very attractive.”

“Well-crafted useful public facility, with sound well thought out. Integrations of nautical themes”

— Jury comments

Type: Parks + Recreation                                  Client: City of Marysville

Location: Marysville, WA                                   Project Lead: Rich Murakami (while at Arai Jackson                                                                                                                                Ellison Murakami)

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