Maple Valley Library

Maple Valley, Washington

Built in the midst of a rapidly developing suburban area, this 12,000 square-foot library is designed to serve the long term needs of the community while attempting to preserve the small 1-3/4 acre forest in which it is placed.

The book collection, lounges, children’s areas, offices and study areas are designed for maximum flexibility while attempting to visually connect the occupants with the living world around them.

The “U” shape shed roof was designed to minimize the visual impact of the building/forest side of the building while presenting a “crown” of wooden eaves to the busy arterial road to the south. This roof configuration also serves to gather all of the water to one central gravel pool. The edges of the pool are serrated in order to catch organic debris that will serve as nutrients for a “moss pool.” By visually displaying the amount of water displaced by the building and the life that it can foster, it is hoped that this wooden building will further connect its users to the place.


– AIA National Honor Award, 2001
– AIA Honor Award, Seattle Chapter, 2001
– Honor Award
The Wood Design Awards, 2001
– Award of Excellence
Building with Trees Awards, 2003