Varey Garden

Seattle, WA, 2006

The Varey Garden is located behind Gould Hall – which is the College of Built Environments at the University of Washington. The site is relatively flat and is towered on the north side by Gould, and flanked on the east by 15th Avenue. 15th Avenue is heavily travelled by pedestrians, cyclists and motorists. A metro bus stop is immediately northeast of the site. This project was implemented in 2006 as a student in LARC 475, a design-build studio at the UW Department of Landscape Architecture.

The garden is designed in memory of Mr. Gordon Varey and his wife Mary Varey whilst providing outdoor living space for the university and the public to enjoy.

The design concept is based on a central circular mound that represents the circle of life. The mound is pierced and encircled by static (non-living) and dynamic (living) elements that visually convey a sense of weight and movement.

A stone wall pierces the grass mound and represents the static or non living aspect of the design. A hedge mirrors the stone wall and also pierces the mound. The hedge represents the living aspect of the design. Perforated metal scrims encircle the mound and create a carousel of movement in the space. Solid seatwalls are placed perpendicular to the scrims to create an interplay between the static and dynamic elements of the garden.