Pierce County Environmental Services 950 64th Street West • University Place, Washington

Designer(s)

Bruce Dees & Associates; SvR Design Company; The Miller|Hull Partnership

Client(s)

Pierce County Public Works and Utilities
Pierce County Environmental Services
Pierce County Environmental Services
Pierce County Environmental Services
Pierce County Environmental Services
Pierce County Environmental Services
Pierce County Environmental Services

Utility Goals

Reduce pollutant loads in rainwater
Reduce downstream damage from runoff
Safely move, control, contain rainwater
Capture rain for reuse (of all kinds, human and natural, from irrigation and toilet flushing to groundwater recharge)
Restore or create habitat

Utility

The basic stormwater management concept at PSECB is capture, convey, cleanse, convey and cleanse more, then infiltrate, accomplished in a linear sequence of multiple treatment techniques.  Roof runoff from the main building falls from a scupper into a concrete basin (made with Steilacoom gravel aggregate, a nod to the site’s history); the basin is incised with a spiral, so runoff spirals through and on to a created wetland.  Any overflow continues via pipe across the building entry plaza to bioretention gardens; excess runoff continues down a bioswale that also accepts runoff from adjacent parking lots and the main pedestrian path.  Bioswale overflow is carried via pipe across a road to a backup in-system flow splitter that’s pretty unique: here 2 valves divert half of the runoff into a grass-lined swale and half into a gravel-lined swale, while a third valve, currently unused, will divert some runoff into a yet-to-be-developed type of system based on future advances in technology.  All remaining runoff, including from the playing fields, infiltrates.

Amenity Goals

Education
Recreation
Safety
Public Relations
Aesthetic Richness

Amenity

The PCESB site design successfully combines public recreation and site reclamation in a multi-faceted landscape that not only celebrates rain, but visually links the resource of rain to the larger natural landscape and educates visitors at every turn. 

Awards & More Information

Awards

2004 / National AIA/COTE Top Ten Awards, Pierce County, Washington Environmental Services Building
2003 / AIA Washington Council Civic Design Merit Award