Seattle Public Schools



Asa Mercer International Middle School Replacement Project

Asa Mercer International Middle School will be replaced with a new school building on the same campus.

The school has relocated to the Van Asselt School interim site — 7201 Beacon Ave. S — for the 2023-2024 and the 2024-25 school year.


construction phase graphic showing that the school is in the Construction phase
Learn what happens during these phases
  • Pre-design phase
  • Schematic design phase
  • Design development phase
  • Construction documents/permitting phase
  • Construction phase in progress
  • School opens Fall 2025

Project Progress

Read the monthly Neighborhood Update from the project team.


aerial view of a group of large buildings with concrete grounds
Aerial view of school before construction started – June 2023
theater seats in a row have the backs removed and lying on the floor
Salvaging the theatre seat backs – August 2023
a brick wall has a long red strip of metal with characters from an Asian language on it in blue
Salvaging the canopy signs – August 2023
an expanse of concrete leads to two partially demolished buildings - one on each side - each has an excavator doing demolition
View of the demolition from the old parking lot – August 2023
a partially demolished building that is part brick. the brick part remains
Demolition of the east wing of the old building – August 2023
a partially demolished building. the remaining part of the building is two stories with a series of arched roofs
Demolition of the west wing of the old school – August 2023
a construction site with construction equipment and trees
Demolition of former school building now complete – Sept. 2023
an excavator digging a hole
Installing deep stormwater and sanitary sewer – Sept. 2023

Construction Update

Project updates are posted for the previous month.

In September, the project team:

  • Finished demolition of the existing buildings
  • Started installing site utilities like storm water, sewer, and water.
  • Starting drilling geothermal wells, which will be used for heating and cooling the new school.

In October, the project team will:

  • Continue installing utilities.
  • Continue drilling geothermal wells.
  • Begin grading the site and setting up for the building footprint using excavators and bulldozers.

Current Design

This drawing shows the current design for the new school building’s main entrance.

a drawing showing a two story building with a wall of windows lit from the inside. There is a canopy over the entry doors.

This site plan shows the planned layout for the campus and new school building. North is to the left of the image. At the bottom is the west boundary at 16th Avenue S.

a drawing showing a school site with a building, parking, and green spaces

Community Participation

School Design Advisory Team

Early in the design process, representatives from the school community come together to form a school’s SDAT. SDATs typically include school and district staff, parents, and community members. Students are sometimes included for all or part of the process. The project construction managers also take part. Learn more about Mercer International Middle School SDAT.

About the Project

The existing Asa Mercer Middle School building will be demolished and a new mass timber multi-story middle school building of approximately 174,000 sq. ft. constructed. Once complete, the new school building will provide permanent space for 1,000 students in grades 6–8.

The new one- to three-story school will be surrounded by landscaping and outdoor learning spaces. A synthetic turf practice field is planned for the east side of campus. A new, secure entry will welcome students, families, and the community with a clearly defined “front door” to the school.

Classrooms will be organized by academic neighborhoods, with flexible support spaces to promote a sense of community and support academic success for all students.

Sustainable design features are built in to meet district goals for clean energy and renewable resources.

Interim Location: During construction, Mercer International Middle School will be located at the Van Asselt School Interim Site, 7201 Beacon Ave. S. An addition is being constructed at that location to convert it to a site large enough for temporary use by middle schools. 

Construction Project Management Shiels Obletz Johnsen, Inc. (SOJ)

SOJ Construction Manager: Justine Kim,, 206-838-3706

School Design: Bassetti Architects

General Contractor/Construction Manager: Cornerstone General Contractors

Funding Source: Funded by the Building Excellence V (BEX V) Capital Levy, approved by Seattle voters in 2019.

Budget: $152.5M

Asa Mercer International Middle School
1600 S Columbian Way
Seattle, WA 98108

School Profile

School Website