Woodman, Jack E.

(1920 - 2005)

Bellevue architect Jack Elvyn Woodman was born in Seattle on December 22, 1920. He grew up in the city and attended the University of Washington on the GI Bill, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture in 1949.

Upon graduation, Woodman moved to Bozeman, Montana and took a job as an architectural instructor at Montana State College. While there his known projects are limited at this time to a home for Lewis Mayfield (1952).

For reasons unknown, Woodman moved back to the Seattle area in 1954 and opened his own architectural practice in the newly incorporated city of Bellevue.

One of his first major projects was to serve as the local supervising architect (with John Rushmore) for Tradewell Market (1956) in Burien design by Welton Becket (a former UW alumni).

This project led to other retail work and soon Woodman became the project architect for the $11 million dollar Crossroads development in Bellevue. Working with developer Dick Willard and George Bell, Woodman planned the 145-acre site and designed a 40-acre shopping center, an 18-hole golf course, numerous professional and office buildings, residential buildings (which included 562 town houses, 1961), and a cultural center to support the Lake Hills development to the south.

By 1965 the firm was engaged in 14 million in shopping center work in Washington & Montana. Many of those projects were financed by Interlake Properties owner Dick Willard. Woodman’s designs for Willard included a Medical Clinic (1959) in Bellevue; an apartment complex (1959); the Rose Hill Shopping Center (1959); Lynwood Shopping Center (1965); the Hess Realty Building (1967) in Bellevue; Twin Lakes Shopping Center (1967) in Federal Way; and the Century City Shopping Center (1968) in Federal Way.

Other notable projects in Bellevue included the Washington Natural Gas Co. Service Center (1961); the Seattle Trust & Savings Bank – Crossroads Branch (1962); the Lake Hills Medical Center (1962); Marketime Drug Store (1963); the Center Stage Theater (1963); an open air ice-skating rink (1963); the Rhodes Store (1964); the Celebrity Restaurant (1964); a 108 unit apartment complex (1964); Gallenkamps Family Shoe Store (1965); Crossroad Village Apartments (1967); and an Ernst Store (1968).

Many of Woodman’s designs feature flat roofs and stark geometric forms of brick and wood, rendered in the Miesian style. Typical examples include his Medical-Dental Buildings (1959) in Renton and Issaquah (1960).

Woodman also developed a specialty in clubhouse design. Projects include the Fairview Golf & Country Club (1968) in Renton; Lakes Golf & Country Club (1968) in Federal Way; Brae Burn and Tam O’Shanter Golf Course Clubhouses (1965-66) in Redmond; Belmor Mobile Home Park Golf Clubhouse (1966) in Federal Way; Twin Lakes Golf & County Club (1968) in Federal Way; Timberlane development community center (1968) in Kent; Hollyhills Mobile Estates community Center (1968) in Woodinville; and Auburn Manor mobile home park community center (1969) in Auburn.

He also designed several homes in Brae Burn, Tam O’Shanter and Cascade neighborhoods in Bellevue and completed plans for eight different developments for Allied Homes Inc. (1967).

As the firm grew, Gene Gladwell (1965) and Elvin Baylis (1967) were named associates. Other office staff included John J. Pruss and Leigh Williams.

Later projects included the Fred Meyer Store (1968) in Lynwood; Lincoln Savings & Loan (1969) in Bellevue; Northwest Building (1969) in Bellevue; Evergreen Village Apartment Complex (1968) in Federal Way; Lincoln First Federal Savings & Loan Building addition (1969) in downtown Bellevue; Kilmarnock Building (1971) in Bellevue; Seafirst National Bank – Aurora Village Branch (1974) in Seattle; Meridian Valley Shopping Center (1980) in Kent; Redmond Plaza Shopping Center (1983) in Redmond

For most of his career, Woodman and his family lived on Mercer Island. He was active in several Eastside communities. He served as president of the Medina Improvement Club, which launched the incorporation drive to create the City of Medina. He later served on the Medina Planning Commission. Woodman was also a member of Overlake Community Club, the Bellevue Rotary Club and the Swinomish Yacht Club. He also served as the 3rd VP of Seattle chapter of the AIA (1976) and was a partner in Meridian Valley Properties.

Woodman retired in 1985 and passed away at the age of 84 in Bellevue on October 14, 2005.

- Michael C. Houser

Photo courtesy of Seattle Times
Medical Clinic, Eastgate (c1965) <br>Photo courtesy of Seattle Times
Sam Hess Realty Building, Bellevue (1967) <br>Photo courtesy of King County Assessor
Lake Hills Medical-Dental Building, Bellevue (1963) <br>Photo courtesy of DAHP
Lake Hills Terrace Apartments, Bellevue (1967) <br>Photo courtesy of Seattle Times
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Photo courtesy of Seattle Times