December 2016

A Trickle of Living Buildings Could Become a Waterfall

The New Buildings Institute reports 53 verified net zero buildings and nearly 300 others in the “emerging” state. One of those projects is Pittsburgh’s Frick Environmental Center which truly demonstrates smart sustainability. The project, orchestrated for the city by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, proves that net-zero can be achieved within a reasonable budget. The team had to model every technology it considered from an energy and a monetary standpoint recalls Rob Aumer, the project’s architect. If the energy savings or the monetary savings didn’t pan out, it was eliminated from the project—for instance, radiant floor heating and the Earth Tube passive air conditioning. “We couldn’t pick every su


Adaptive Reuse

The reuse movement is happening across the country. In Seattle, architect Susan Jones, orchestrated a partial demolition of a 1980s office building to create a new home for the First Congregational Church of Seattle’s growing congregation. In Baltimore, sports clothing retailer Under Armour’s new facility is contained in a former Big-Box store reimagined as a corporate campus with the help of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. In Chicago, the former New York Life Insurance Building was rescued from demolition thanks to the efforts of Kimpton Hotels, who, as part of their effort to preserve historical structures reopened the building as the luxurious “The Gray.” In the case of the latter, it’s just mor


DC Metrorail Covers Its Tracks

The multi-billion dollar, two-phase Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project relies on the installation of standing seam panels to highlight escalator vaults, rider pavilions, pedestrian bridges and canopies. The Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project is a 23-mile extension of Washington’s existing Metrorail System. Construction of Phase 1 is complete and covers 11.7 miles with five stations. Phase 2 is underway and will complete the extension with six additional stations. Upon completion, the line will provide a one-seat, no-transfer ride from Dulles Airport to downtown Washington, D.C. creating a long-sought connectivity between the burgeoning Washington corridor and the nation’s capital. Chu Contract

When entering the underpass the color-changing lighting effects provide a dynamic display. There are also lighting fixtures under benches (below) to provide a soft glow for adjacent walking surfaces, which gives the paths a “romantic” feel in contrast to the underpass lighting.

Innovative Teaming of Baseball and Transit

Target Field, home of MLB’s Minnesota Twins, completed a lighting design, which provided a digital signature that extends to an illuminated underpass and lighted pathway where benches provide a soft glow. Target Field Metro Transit Station in downtown Minneapolis represents a whole new concept in public transit. Located adjacent to Target Field—home to Major League Baseball’s Minnesota Twins—the open-air, 60-acre multi-modal transportation hub is becoming a communal backyard for the Twin Cities. This urban gathering space uniquely integrates commuter trains, a light rail station, bus service, and parking with green space, retailers, an amphitheater, and more. Perkins Eastman Architects’ visi


Medical Facility Gets Site Specific Design

San Antonio surgical center and its design team worked to create a building that responded to the site, including the environmental impacts of wind and rain. Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, is the largest outpatient ambulatory care center in the Department of Defense. The $380-million phased project brought a LEED Gold facility that spans 670,000 sq. ft. to Lackland Air Force Base. As part of the Wilford Hall replacement, the design team at HDR worked to design a building that responded to the site, including the environmental impacts of solar and wind. The design team wanted materials that reflected both rural central Texas and the hi-tech