SolHaus wins 2017 Green Builder Home of the Year Award!

We're pleased to share that SolHaus, co-developed by b9 architects and Cascade Built, has won the "Home of the Year" award in the category of "Best Urban Infill Project." 

Clad in a mix of reclaimed barn wood and modern materials, the project is comprised of 10 uniquely designed townhomes that reflect careful attention to detail and energy efficiency. SolHaus was designed and constructed to rigorous passive house standards to significantly reduce energy consumption and offer superlative comfort for occupants. Located in the city’s urban core, SolHaus owners enjoy large windows overlooking a common courtyard and private rooftop decks with sweeping city views for vibrant indoor/outdoor living. Additional project features include double-height spaces, all LED lighting, zero VOC paints, high-performance European tilt & turn windows, and continuous fresh air filtered and free from pollution, dust and mold by state-of- the-art systems. SolHaus was completed in summer 2016.

Click the articles below for more information:

"2016 Green Home of the Year Award Winner: Ultra Efficient" in Green Builder Media

b9 architects website

"SolHaus wins green award" in the DJC (Daily Journal of Commerce)

"Passive townhouses in Capitol Hill win national award for green building" in Curbed Seattle

First Central Station Update
Photo courtesy of Genesee Martin

Photo courtesy of Genesee Martin

Our team is happy to report that First Central Station, a 385 unit mixed-use development in Seattle’s central district, has received unanimous approval from the East Design Review Board. b9 architects, Build LLC, Karen Kiest Landscape Architects, and local artist Paul Rucker presented the design. 

The meeting was the second and final stage in the city’s design review process and highlighted the team’s efforts to work with neighbors, community organizations, city officials, and the design review board to provide a unique project that is sensitive to a variety of concerns. The collaborative efforts of the architectural design team, b9 architects and Build LLC, have resulted in a project that captures the distinct design philosophies of each office and projected them on to different portions of the site, a strategy that produces a sense that the buildings have emerged from multiple voices as opposed to a single master plan.


The team utilized a variety of communication tools to bring the design review board up to speed on the project – renderings, diagrams, and a presentation model assisted in making plain the complexities of the design. In the end, the support of the board was a reminder that successful design can emerge from complex collaboration and neighborhood inclusion. It can be hard work, but the result, we believe, will be one of a kind.


To learn more about First Central Station and its design philosophy, be sure to check out Build LLC's blog post HERE

All images courtesy of b9 architects, Build LLC, and Karen Kiest Landscape Architects

Massing evolutions of each building:

Landscape Plan by Karen Kiest Landscape Architects 

Site Plan Diagrams

Site concepts by local artist, Paul Rucker

"On June 10, 1918, Seattle saw its first local jazz band perform in Washington Hall, at 14th Avenue and Fir Street. In the 1920s and 1930s jazz flourished in the Central District. We have an opportunity with the construction of First Central Station to acknowledge this legacy by integrating musical notation and themes in the wayfinding. The example shown here uses quarter notes as directional signs to bordering neighborhoods.

Naming of buildings uses solfège

Do= Building #1

Re= Building #2

Mi= Building #3

Solfège is a system for singing notes. If you’re familiar with the famous Rogers and Hammerstein song “Do-Re-Mi” from The Sound of Music, you already know the solfège note names: do, re, mi, fa, sol, la and ti."


**To pause on a specific image, hover your mouse over the image

"House : Housing :: Zone : Zoning" in participation with 2016 Seattle Design Festival


Thanks to everyone who joined the discussion! The event was engaging, insightful, and relevant for both the public and the design community. A special thanks to David Neiman for moderating and our stellar panel - Josh Bower, David Cutler, Gabriel Grant, Cary Moon, and Nick Welch.

**All images courtesy of William Wright

Is Seattle's current zoning code preventing or encouraging positive growth in Seattle?

What actions can developers, architects, planners, politicians, taxpayers do to create positive change in Seattle's growth - urbanistically, demographically, culturally, and spatially?

Where are there areas of potential innovative ways of growth and change, pertaining to housing and zoning?


In participation of this year's Seattle Design Festival and Design in Public’s year’s theme of “Design Change,” b9 architects is excited to host a panel discussion on the relation between housing and zoning in terms of Seattle’s current growth.

Through both a moderated conversation with our esteemed panel and the opportunity for an open dialogue about Seattle's rapidly changing urban fabric, we will delve into issues of zoning, density, value, and change. We invite you to join the conversation about how to create positive change and growth in Seattle! 

Where: b9 architects
When: Friday, Sept. 16, 6-8 PM

Our panel:

David Neiman (moderator)
Neiman Taber Architects

Josh Brower
Veris Law Group

David Cutler
Principal, Office for the City

Gabriel Grant
Principal, Spectrum Development Solutions 

Cary Moon
Urban Planner/Activist

Nick Welch
Seattle Office of Planning and Community Development