5th & Columbia Tower

Located in the heart of Seattle's financial district, the 43-story 5th and Columbia mixed use tower will add a new contemporary form to the skyline, classic in style yet evolutionary and emblematic of 21st century Seattle. The approximately 761,500 GMA tower will be highly visible throughout the city with sustainable design features making a bold statement about the new workplace environment and prosperous future of Seattle.

As part of a plan to save the adjacent historically significant First United Methodist Church (FUMC) sanctuary and maximize development potentials in downtown Seattle, the new tower will rise gracefully beside the church instead of taking its place. The same ethic of stewardship continues with the careful accommodation of the Rainier Club, the registered historic landmark which shares the block.

Working with Daniels Real Estate, Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Architects (ZGF) explored numerous design configurations in order to preserve and celebrate the urban sacred site while developing a contemporary office building. The design is limited to a ¼ block footprint (the first under the new downtown office core (DOC-1) zoning requirements) at the SE corner of the site, preserving ¾ of the block for the historic structures and public space.

Inspired by classical figures such as Michelangelo's David and the Venus de Milo, the design is balanced and proportional with the landmark church and Rainier Club. The slender faceted tower subtly slopes over the existing structures creating a unique architectural expression that distinguishes itself from adjacent tall buildings and enables the historic structures below to remain visually prominent at the street level. The pedestrian experience is enhanced through preservation of existing landscape, additional street trees, landscaped open spaces, a living wall, and overhead weather protection.