Green River College is a public two-year college where students from all over the world come together to learn, grow and enrich their lives. Green River's main campus, founded in Auburn's Lea Hill neighborhood in 1965, stretches over 180 acres of beautifully forested land. See details below.
Green River has experienced recent growth unequaled in its history. The college master plan incorporates strategies for three satellite campuses: Enumclaw Campus, and Kent Campus I and II, located in the Kent Station project. Construction of a new Auburn Center is nearly complete and will open Fall Quarter, 2016. It replaces the Adult Education Center located at the Auburn train station. See details below.
Facilities Condition Survey
In 1989, the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) established a survey process for all state-owned community and technical college facilities at 34 campuses. The intent of the survey is to provide a determination of the physical condition of community and technical college facilities and to identify capital repair project candidates for funding consideration by applying a uniform process system-wide. The first year, the process included a detailed baseline condition survey conducted at each college. Less detailed surveys were conducted in 1991 and 1993. In 1995, a second baseline condition survey was conducted. Survey updates were then conducted in 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2005, and 2007.
The downturn in the economy in 2008 caused the SBCTC to cancel the survey scheduled for 2009. An Executive Summary of the most recent survey conducted in 2015 can be found at;
Main Campus Location
Green River College is located in south King County, two miles northeast of downtown Auburn. The site lies on a bluff high above the Green River. The property is bounded on the east by SR18 and on the south by the Green River; the north and west boundaries border residential developments. Just south of the Green River is Auburn Narrows Park with the Muckleshoot Reservation further to the south.
For Directions, go to Directions & Maps and locate "Main Campus" icon.
For more information about programs offered at the main campus go to the Green River website.
The main campus is situated on 145 acres leased from the Department of Natural Resources, 86 acres owned by the college, and 4 acres owned by the Green River College Foundation. Ninety three acres are currently developed.
The college operates 32 facilities; 28 of the buildings are on the main campus. The total gross square footage for the college-operated buildings is 805,523 square feet.
Satellite campuses include Enumclaw (leased from the Green River College Foundation), Kent Campus, and the new Auburn Center.
The college also owns 90 acres of forested property near Mud Mountain Dam, east of Enumclaw.
For parcel ownership, see Parcel Ownership-Leases
In January, 2008, the City of Auburn annexed the Green River site with the exception of the undeveloped southeast portion of Parcel 162105-9003, which remains within King County jurisdiction. The City of Auburn created a new "Institutional" zone for the campus.
The campus environment and form is distinguished by the heavily forested site. Most of the campus is densely and beautifully filled with trees and shrubs. This strengthens a sense of intimacy on the campus and closeness to nature.
There are a number of sensitive areas on the south portion of the property owned by the college, and just a few sensitive areas on the developed portion of campus. Most of the sensitive areas are limited to a section south of the bluff that extends to the Green River and located several hundred feet from the southernmost building.
Landslide areas reach their northernmost point at the top of the bluff. Erosion hazards border the Green River. Seismic hazards are located just south of the Green River and along SE Auburn Black Diamond Road.
Wetlands can be found just north of the TI complex, on the east side of Parking Lot P1, north of Parking Lot P5, north and south of Parking Lot P7, and west of Parking Lot P10.
The developed part of campus has a complete network of pedestrian pathways between buildings and other important spaces. The pedestrian experience is pleasant due to the large number of trees and comfortable scale of the buildings, but most pathways appear utilitarian. The yellow fire lanes and “service drive” character of those pathways with asphalt paving contribute to this.
The planned demolition of inadequate buildings and addition of new buildings will provide an opportunity to improve the clarity of circulation, open space and the pedestrian experience.
Completion of the SE 320th Street project, the new Student Union and Trades Technologies facilities created a stronger pedestrian and visual entry between 122nd Avenue SE and 124th Avenue SE.
In addition, a fitness trail circles through the woods and sensitive areas in the southern portion of campus past wetlands and certain plant species used for education. This path is highly valued by the college.
Vehicles enter the campus at two points along SE 320th Street. Both entrances are equal in hierarchy and enter into parking lots. There is no primary campus entrance and the existing entrances do not convey a strong front-door image for the college.
Vehicular circulation on the campus is generally through parking lots that surround the existing development and are difficult to navigate. The existing loop road is somewhat difficult to follow, with changes in topography; this is especially true on the west side of campus.
Service access to a number of buildings is provided via pedestrian routes. Buildings with docks or loading areas include SU, TT, HLB, SS, RLC, LSC, CH, WT, MC as well as the TID Shipping Receiving building. Service to other buildings is provided through these loading areas.
Fire lanes are also located on pedestrian routes. Two major fire lanes circulate through campus, one along Mathews Way and the other past LSC and PE between Mathews Way and the IV complex. A short lane provides access to the ZWC, OEB, and RLC. Another short lane is just south of SE 320th Street between HLB and SS.
While it is important to maximize circulation routes with multiple uses, these routes are most often used by pedestrians and should read as predominantly pedestrian pathways. Currently the yellow striping, large lettering for fire lanes and the asphalt itself gives the pathways the feel of a service lane and diminish the quality of a pedestrian experience.
Parking was originally established as two large separate "dead-end" lots on the east and west. Eventually the lots were connected with a loop road and parking was added along the road in the south (Lot P6 and 7) and at a large lot to the southwest of campus (Lot P5).
The parking lots are interrupted with substantial and sometimes mature plantings of native and non-native plants. These plantings serve to soften the visual impact of the parking, reinforce the forested character of the campus, and reduce the amount of storm runoff from the parking paving.
The total number of stalls currently provided is 2,336. Click here to view a breakdown of the number and types of parking spaces in each lot. Planning for additional parking should insure minimal impact on the environment, particularly vegetation and wetlands, and retain the natural and informal arrangement.
A future parking garage has been considered as an alternative to increased surface parking in order to minimize increases in impervious surfaces and the impact on the environment. However, the current shuttle system for offsite parking at the raceway has been very successful. Up to 1,000 cars have been parked at peak time, keeping that many cars off campus. The offsite parking agreements are temporary, and securing permanent agreements is a critical step in the continued viability of this option.
Transportation and Parking Alternatives
The college Transportation Advisory Committee provides leadership for transportation and parking initiatives. The committee’s mission statement reads:
"To provide our college community with a safe and efficient transportation plan that will enhance the accessibility, mobility and parking on campus."
The work of this committee is vital to the college master planning efforts. Current transportation and parking information may be viewed at the committee’s parking and transportation website.
The Enumclaw Campus (owned by the Green River College Foundation) is an extension of Green River located in downtown Enumclaw, 15 miles southeast of Auburn. Located on the edge of Enumclaw's central business district at the southwest corner of Porter Street and Griffin Avenue, this facility provides 11,518 gross square feet of program and support space.
For Directions, go to the campus map and locate "Enumclaw Campus" icon.
For more information about programs offered at Enumclaw go to: Course at Enumclaw.
The City of Kent and Tarragon Development, in a public-private partnership developed Kent Station, a realization of the City's vision to create a downtown that is the community's focal point and identity. Kent Station is located adjacent to Sound Transit's Sounder Commuter Rail Station and parking garage, the existing downtown, and the King County Regional Justice Center.
Taking into consideration the long-term goal of expanding the college's presence at the Kent Campus during Phase II, college staff worked with the project developer to locate Kent Campus Phase I adjacent to a building site ideally suited for the construction of Phase II.
Kent Campus Phase I completed in the summer of 2005 and Phase II in the summer of 2009 are in close proximity to the Sounder train station and bus connectors, providing excellent public transportation for students and staff.
For directions go to Directions & Maps and locate "Kent Campus" icon
Programs and Services
The Phase I and II facilities provide over 66,000 gross square feet of program and support space to better serve the communities in the northern portion of our service district, as well as allow the college to expand its offerings by delivering general studies programs.
For more information about programs offered at Kent Campus go to the Courses at Kent Campus website.
Other Off-Site Facilities
The college leases 3,840 GSF in Auburn at the Western Sound Investment Storage Facility for drama program-related storage.
Green River owns 80 acres of land east of Enumclaw on the White River. The property, formerly known as Mud Mountain Dam, was re-named the Pat Cummins Managed Forest to honor the work of the Natural Resources program's founder. The Natural Resources students study in the outdoor classroom, and have a large log cabin that the Forestry Club maintains.