The improved Goldendale Observatory features a modern learning space that reflects the beauty and details of the sky it showcases. Once considered an international dark sky park, Goldendale Observatory occupies five acres atop a 2,100 foot hill on the northern side of Goldendale, WA and typically receives 30,000-40,000 visitors annually. 47 years after construction, Tapani performed the first major renovation of the unique state park in 2019. The purpose of the renovation was to increase the Observatory’s holding capacity to accommodate the increase in popularity as well as update the existing features.
The scope of work included the demolition of the northern wooden structure, slab and utilities. The Southern Dome Room masonry walls were then selectively altered and concrete roof edges added to facilitate the expansion of the Observatory. The expansion of the facility included a new radiused, wood framed 3,900 square foot entry and orientation space, presentation room, retail space, office, rest rooms, and a mechanical room. New radiused walls around the South Dome telescope room were also added, along with improvements and upgrades to the telescope within. Exterior improvements included ADA access, etched finish concrete flat work and seat wall, new asphalt parking lot, native boulder retaining walls, and new plants and shrubs. With an improved telescope, ceilings and walls hand painted with planets and constellations, an expanded amphitheater room with periodic elements painted onto the polished concrete and the black wood paneled exterior made to absorb light, this was a truly unique building experience.