North Cascades Environmental Learning Center

Diablo Lake, North Cascades National Park
Project Role:
Principal in charge: David Hall, HKP
Project Designer: David Hall
Landscape Architect: Rich Haag and Associates

The North Cascades Environmental Learning Center was designed to demonstrate stewardship toward our natural resources. Using the old growth forests, canyons and creeks of the North Cascades as a metaphor, the Learning Center provides a sheltering cluster of buildings, columns, beams, struts and canopies made from lumber, concrete, steel and glass. The 38,000-SF campus includes the following: multimedia classrooms, laboratories, a library, dining hall, overnight accommodations for ninety two in three lodges, staff housing, outdoor shelters and trails. Designed for teaching, exploration, research and volunteer service, the Learning Center offers unique opportunities for understanding our region’s natural and cultural history.

The project represents a partnership between the City of Seattle, North Cascades National Parks and North Cascades Institute. The project achieved LEED® Silver certification.


  • 1999 Seattle Chapter AIA What makes it Green – top recognition, innovation and vision
  • 2000 NW Chapter AIA Citation Award – Un-built project
  • 2005 NW Chapter AIA – Merit Award
  • 2006 AIA Washington Civic Design Awards – Merit Award
  • 2006 AIA Northwest and Pacific Region – Citation Award
  • 2006 Forest Stewardship Council – National Design Award
  • 2008 Council of Educational Facilities and Planners International – Polished Apple Award and Peoples Choice Award


  • 3/30/2006 Seattle Times, Life and Arts Section D – Intelligent Design by Lawrence Cheek
  • 8/13/2008 Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce – AIA Project of the Month: North Cascades Center lives up to its promises
Click the photo above to enlarge it.
Unless otherwise noted, all photography by David Hall.
P.O. Box 255, 14032 Gilmore Ave. Edison, WA 98232 Phone: (360) 707-8804