Design for Wagner Education Center at The Center for Wooden Boats Unveiled


SEATTLE, Oct. 24, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Construction of the new $6.6 million Wagner Education Center at The Center for Wooden Boats (CWB) is scheduled to begin this winter. Designed by award-winning Seattle architect Tom Kundig of Olson Kundig Architects, the building harkens back to historic Northwest boatbuilding facilities while at the same time serves as a modern front door for the growing museum, Lake Union Park and the surrounding South Lake Union neighborhood. Kundig's interest in creating shape-shifting structures will be evident in the Wagner Education Center, where large windows flank interior spaces and movable exterior panels shift up or down to allow for the control of natural light and open or close the building.

"We designed the center to reflect our region's deep maritime history, provide a functional and efficient environment for the center, and to serve its diverse audiences," notes architect Tom Kundig. "The design features wood, glass and steel, and just like on a boat, every inch of space and feature is designed to provide the highest function." The new CWB Wagner Education Center is seeking a LEED Gold Certification thanks to its design that reduces environmental impacts both during construction and in operation.

The new building will house a dedicated youth classroom that can be converted to a sail loft in the evening; new gallery and exhibit space; and a boat shop designed to facilitate the restoration of the museum's largest boats and the construction of new boats from historic designs. The education center is the largest part of a $9.5 million dollar capital improvement project that is also upgrading the organization's existing floating facilities at the south end of Lake Union. It will also bring necessary upgrades to CWB's workshop and warehouse at the North end of the lake and will strengthen the museum's financial stability.

"CWB's sailing and boatbuilding classes, programs for kids, historical maritime exhibits and artifacts are overflowing our original floating boathouse and boat shop," said Lori O'Tool, CWB Board President. "Tom Kundig at Olson Kundig Architects knows how to design the kind of human scale building that retains the feel and character that has always made CWB a place where everyone feels welcome."

Details about the campaign, and information on how the community can help, can be found on the CWB website at

About Olson Kundig Architects

Olson Kundig Architects is a Seattle-based architecture firm led by owners Jim Olson, Tom Kundig, Kirsten R. Murray, and Alan Maskin. The 105-person firm specializes in a range of projects both nationally and internationally, including cultural centers; academic and civic projects; new and renovated residences, particularly for art collectors; mixed-use buildings; academic and civic projects; museums and exhibit design; cultural centers; places of worship; urban design; and interior design. The firm is the recipient of the 2009 Architecture Firm Award, awarded by the American Institute of Architects.

About The Center for Wooden Boats

The Center for Wooden Boats, founded in 1976, provides a gathering place where maritime history comes alive through direct experience and our small craft heritage is enjoyed, preserved, and passed along to future generations. CWB, with locations on Lake Union in Seattle and at Cama Beach State Park on Camano Island, engages visitors in whole body learning by putting the historic boats, oars and paddles, sails and tools in the hands of people who visit.

Media Contacts:

The Center for Wooden Boats

Dan Leach

o-206-382-2628 ext. 31


Hi-res images available upon request.

A photo accompanying this release is available at:

CONTACT: Matt Anderson Olson Kundig Architects matt@olsonkundig.comSource:Olson Kundig Architects