top of page

Orca@Whitworth K-8 School 

seattle public schools

The popular Orca K-8 science program was relocated to the Whitworth school. The project includes a science classroom, greenhouse, and new garden additions with the design integrated into the architecture of the existing school.


Replacing a previously paved portion of the school site, the design of the new building and garden support the program’s mission of teaching sustainability. Broken up concrete from the paving was used to make paths through the garden. Natural light is maximized in the greenhouse and science classroom augmented by direct and indirect light fixtures using occupancy and light sensors to turn off and dim lights. Heating and cooling systems were installed for energy efficiency. Passive ventilation and sun shades cool the greenhouse and mechanical ventilation cools the classroom. Energy-saving heating controls include a smart warm-up cycle so the space reaches a comfortable temperature as occupants arrive.


Materials throughout the addition are renewable, recycled and recyclable, including recycled plastic benches, recycled and sustainable wall coverings, and renewable building materials. A cistern was provided for collecting storm water from the roof of the existing building using the water to irrigate the raised planter beds.

Type: K-12 Schools                                           Client: Seattle Public Schools

Location: Seattle, WA                                        Project Lead: Alex Rolluda

News / Press:

bottom of page