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October 14, 2021
Juanita Beach Park bathhouse
ABC members: Ahlers, Cressman & Sleight; Propel Insurance; Safety Matters
Location: 9703 N.E. Juanita Drive, Kirkland
Juanita Beach is a healthy, active and thriving community. Windsurfing, cycling and outdoor volleyball on sand courts are just a few of the forms of recreation you’ll find on any given day. At the center of all this activity is Juanita Beach Park, a place beloved by the community and never short on visitors. Across the street you’ll find the iconic Spud Fish & Chips and the insanely popular Lake Washington Bar with outdoor sand volleyball courts. First time visitors might think they’re in California.
When the city of Kirkland needed to make additions and improvements to this historic public space, it needed to be more than just conforming to the existing park. The Juanita Beach bathhouse project involved the construction of two 3,000-square-foot bathhouses, two outdoor pavilions and an inclusive playground that provides the just-right level of challenge, addresses all levels of ability, and goes beyond minimum accessibility to create play experiences that meet a variety of needs and interests. Developed with a craftsman architectural style that matches overall character and historical recreational use, the project theme maintains a natural Northwest aesthetic, inspired by the beach resort that the Forbes family operated there in the early 1900s.
The project’s designers used sustainable and durable materials. The bathhouse walls’ structural components are glazed concrete masonry units, the substrate of the roof is cross-laminated timber, and the weathering steel elements are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. The glazed CMUs of the interior of the bathrooms and lifeguard station allow the structural component of the building to also serve as the interior finish which is functional, practical and attractive.