Locks Administation Building National Historic Site

At the Heart of the Locks is the Historic Administration Building, still providing quality working space for key employees.

Administration phone # 206-789-2622


Completed in 1916, it was built to house the offices of the project’s administrators, as well as the pumps used to drain the locks dry during maintenance. The Administration Building serves as the architectural focal point for the project.

The Administration Building was designed by consulting architect, Carl F. Gould, a regionally renowned architect. Gould ornamented the exterior of the building with details from the classical order, including columns (pilasters), pediments, and fluted brackets.

The interior, recently restored, is richly detailed, with an oval skylight above, filtering natural light through its stained glass. The walls feature extensive oak moulding, historical photographs line the walls. The balcony’s cast iron railing is ornamented with both eagles and federal shields. The terrazzo floor is inlaid with an oval of black Alaskan marble, mirroring the skylight above, and containing at its center the brass castle emblem of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The building is open to guided tours only

The Friends of the Ballard Locks have done extensiver research on the Locks and Administration Building.  For access to history archives contact the visitor center