By Nick Gilbert
Perkins+Will, an interdisciplinary design firm, announced the opening of the newly renovated Husky Union Building (HUB) at the University of Washington.
The opening of HUB 2.0 will initiate a new chapter in the life of the students of this University of the Pacific Northeast. HUB’s latest incarnation, which took five years of designing and construction, features all the contemporary facilities of a state-of-the-art student campus.
Since the original construction of HUB in 1948-49, this is the most expensive renovation. The building represents a bridge to the university's future, blending all the original elements with the brand new features. Half of the 60-year-old building’s superstructure was preserved, with expansions to the existing infrastructure, creating a more accessible, spacious, connected and inviting structure than its predecessor. The newly renovated HUB represents a model of existing building utilization, leading universities and colleges across the nation to improve on their infrastructure, while capitalizing on the historical and ethnic zones of the buildings.
The renovation project incorporates a variety of sustainable elements and aims towards achieving the LEED Gold certification. The center of the building features a series of atriums that not only enlivens the building, but also cuts down energy consumption and cost with the creation of naturally illuminated and ventilated spaces. Optimum daylight use, natural and mechanical systems as well as the recent upgrades to the building’s exterior wall, are expected to result in saving of 25% of the energy, in comparison with other buildings. The rain garden that runs along the sidewalk of Stevens Way is landscaped with native plants and treated for storm water runoff, providing environmental and enhanced aesthetics to the residents.