Green Lake Elementary’s New Green Cafeteria

June 8, 2015 7:49am

via Studio Meng Strazzara

Until April 2015, Green Lake Elementary kiddos ate lunch on tables set up in a covered play area with food served from a kitchen not much larger than the size of a large closet. But thanks to a capital levy, (Building Excellence IV) approved by Seattle voters in 2013, Green Lake Elementary School recently completed renovations to a new cafeteria for lunch, performance and multipurpose activities.

The new green-designed 8,200-square-foot cafeteria was created by Steve Lee, the architect for local design firm Studio Meng Strazzara, and a former parent of Green Lake Elementary students. The cafeteria meets Washington Sustainable Schools Protocol (WSSP), a “green” rating system developed by the State, with features such as windows that allow ample access to natural light and fresh air, ceiling fans for circulation and cooling, LED lighting and a high-performance building envelope that creates efficiencies for heating and cooling.

The kitchen area also achieved a major upgrade in terms of space, increasing from 165-square feet to 600-square feet, featuring a solar hot-water system located on the roof that pre-heats water up to 140 degrees. It also includes a system that collects, filters and re-uses water for use in pre-washing dishes, saving 200,000 gallons of water each year.

The cafeteria and kitchen were designed with direct access to the teaching garden which features a green roof over the lower portion of the roof that is also used as a teaching element. A key green feature outside is a 2,500-gallon cistern that collects rainwater flowing off the roof to be used in the garden, a space that is integral to the learning curriculum for students.

Congrats on the new space Green Lake Elementary!