2021 Bellingham’s New Waterfront: Proposals for a Model Climate District


Final Publication

The Scan Design Interdisciplinary Master Studio spent fall 2021 imagining new futures for Bellingham’s post industrial waterfront. The studio in particular focused on developing closed loop systems, carbon mitigation, bioremediation all well as considering predicted sea level rise due to anthropogenic global warming.

Bellingham’s former Georgia-Pacific industrial waterfront site presents an unparalleled opportunity to explore how cities can become part of the solution to the climate crisis. By designating this waterfront area a “Climate District,” students were able to maintain focus on solutions for both accelerating climate protection (mitigation) as well as for adapting to projected impacts by planning for inevitable, though variable, future conditions. In conjunction with these challenges, the site is exceedingly complex, with legacy pollution and cultural amnesia, and rich opportunities for direct connections to the city’s downtown and a linked system of recreational and ecological open spaces.