Rainforest Arts Center, City of Forks, Forks, Washington
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Rainforest Arts Center
City of Forks
Forks, Washington
  • 2016 Honorable Mention, AIA Washington Council Civic Design Awards
  • 2016 INstory Award, International Interior Design Association (IIDA), Northern Pacific Chapter
The Rainforest Arts Center is a relatively small project with a wide community impact that vastly exceeds its size. Located in a small rural town in western Washington, the new facility replaces a historic building which burned down. The limited budget pushed NAC Architecture and the community to engage creatively throughout the design and construction process, resulting in a design solution that provides an archetypal civic building with a strong connection to the history and culture of the town. Several design elements were the result of residents coming together to build something for their community. Local high school students installed a Northwest-themed mural made from square log ends in the lobby with guidance from the NAC team. Working closely with NAC, University of Washington architecture students designed and built the acoustical wall panels as part of their fabrication project (see featured photo of students assembling panels on the Arts Center floor). A local mill donated a large curved wood beam window seat. The community has embraced their new facility, and it has already served a variety of uses, including Chamber of Commerce meetings, Washington State Supreme Court sessions, weddings, dances for all ages and many more.