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Work has been completed on Founders Hall designed by LMN Architects at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business. The Seattle-based company, which recently featured on our Meet your next employer series, used the 84,800 square foot building to create “a new center for community, entrepreneurship, and innovation” while incorporating architectural principles of sustainability and harmonization with the larger campus.
Now complete, the building becomes the first all-log building on the University of Washington campus. In addition to reducing the program’s intrinsic carbon footprint, the use of Douglas fir has also been leveraged to create a “warm and inviting” atmosphere within the school. On the exterior, wood is mixed with masonry to both reflect the material palette of the surrounding campus and “hint at the experience” on the interior.
Inside, the building is comprised of three volumes hosting student collaboration spaces, offices, classrooms, and gathering spaces, all connected by a five-story steel and wood staircase that weaves” through the solid wood structure. Among the facilities contained in the program are two-level classrooms that can accommodate 65 or 135 students, 28 team and interview rooms, four executive conference rooms, a student common room with an outdoor terrace and a forum rooftop events.
Natural and mechanical ventilation are integrated into the building to reduce reliance on air conditioning, while glulam floors and glulam posts and beams are left exposed on the interior to form a visual connection with the Douglas fir and campus redwoods.
Combining the solid wood structure with fossil fuel-free operation, natural ventilation and a tightly sealed building envelope, the team calculated that the system offers a 79% reduction in energy consumption, 63% reduction in water consumption and 58% of water consumption. embodied carbon, compared to traditional construction.
“The new Founders Hall is an architectural and philosophical continuation of the interconnected spaces that LMN Architects have designed for the Foster School of Business for many years,” said Kate Westbrook, Principal of LMN Architects. “It is distinguished by an increased focus on sustainability goals, social equity and inclusiveness, and increased opportunities for community connection.”
The completion of the mass timber program comes at a time when the University of Washington is expanding its Carbon Leadership Forum, with its search for embodied carbon researchers, recently the focus of our Job Highlights series. In addition, the institution recently partnered with NBBJ to explore ways to stimulate creativity in hybrid workplaces.
Founders Hall is also one of many recently completed projects to feature in our editorial. Last month, Foster + Partners completed the EU’s tallest building in Poland, as well as a pair of towers in Shenzhen for drone and camera company DJI. In France, MVRDV recently completed a 138-unit “geological” residential complex, while in Arkansas, Studio Gang put the finishing touches on the Museum of Fine Arts of Arkansas ahead of its opening in 2023.