Jelly Bean is a manufactured cloud hovering over the cultural campus of Seattle Center. One of three finalists in Seattle’s Urban Intervention design ideas competition, it’s the work of Boston-based PRAUD (Dongwoo Kim and Rafael Luna), together with Cheng-Yang Lee (with Machado & Silvetti Associates), a team whose intentions are deliberately iconic. Their renderings show how a balloon, 10 storeys up in the air, will challenge and complement Seattle’s sky-bound symbol, the 605-foot-high Space Needle that opened in 1962, and the more earthbound forms of the Gehry Associates’ Experience Music Project (EMP), opened in 2000. Jelly Bean situates itself in design history while it mediates between the lofty heights of the needle—the saucer-shaped restaurant, at 500 feet, it is just 20 feet under the highest hill in the city–and the EMP on the ground. It’s designed for visibility and impact, conceptually and literally, in its connection to the Center, neighborhood, and city.
“Park” team: Koning Eizenberg and Arup
In response to the design brief for Urban Intervention, a design ideas competition being hosted Seattle Center and AIA Seattle, “Park”, one of the three finalists proposes just what its name implies: a park-like setting that addresses the 9 acre Memorial Stadium site and provides a new organization for the many disparate parts of the larger, 75 acre Seattle Center campus into a singular, unified solution. The proposal is much more complex than a simple park, though, and the more you dig into it the more you discover how thoughtful and appropriate the solution is.