On Jan. 10, 2013, three main and differing concepts were reviewed as potential layouts for the Issaquah Campus—extension of Bellevue College. The concepts are concerned with the natural layout of the 20-acre land parcel on which the East Campus is destined to be.
Concept reviews and discussion were held in BC campus room N-201, allowing student and faculty feedback.
Located just off I-90, near water-lands, mature forests, parks/recreations and Swedish Hospital, it is ideal for environmental research, athletic programs and medical classes. However it is miles away from Issaquah’s Park and Ride with no specific bus route to the East Campus.
A main objective of the three projects is adapting circulation to the one access road leading to the site. It is necessary to drive through Issaquah to reach the East campus. However, any troubles that commuting may give to future faculty, students and staff are looked upon with optimism. “We are hopeful that a circulator type of bus would be developed with the city in cooperation with Swedish,” says Debra Born from capital project and planning.
A concern of the community and the City of Issaquah is the traffic and circulation that will result, and how to best plan ahead for it.
The faculty and programs offered at the East Campus are not yet established. These are to be determined according to demand and feasibility. The residential location and nearby developments are promising whether credit courses or continuing education are initiated. The current project is long-term, looking at 20 to 40 years completion.
Faculty and staff have voiced concerns of finance; will the East Campus reduce funding for the Bellevue Campus? It is a concern that project developers are hopeful will not occur.
All proposed projects aim to be adaptable to the natural slope of the land and preserving of the surrounding environment.
The first concept aims to create spacious areas while adhering and allowing the campus to be spread over slope land. The second concept offers great open plaza spaces but must confirm to the landscape with extensive grading. The final concept is the most compact offering under-building parking garages.
Smaller sites require less clearing and grading, and therefore are less expensive, explained East Campus Administrator Dan Dawson. Parking previsions are taken as a precaution, and each concept has taken into account large parking garages and spaces.
No one concept is absolute, and a final project layout may in fact be the intertwining of all three. The most promising aspect of each is highlighted and likely to result in a final design. The subsequent master plan that will be proposed to the City of Issaquah will depend on feedback received from the meeting, and heavily on the influence of surrounding community. “City of Issaquah is interested in how the campus relates to the community, especially on college circulation,” said Debra Born.
For more information contact Daniel Dawson.