Tacoma Center for Urban Waters

Envisioned as an inspiration for environmentally regenerative development, the Center for Urban Waters combines high concept with a contextually defined design process. This unique 56,000 sq, foot office and marine research laboratory center is located on the Foss Waterway in downtown Tacoma, Washington.


Sustainable Lab Space

The Tacoma Center for Urban Waters brings together local, state and federal governments along with the University of Washington, private industry and other interested parties to find and develop solutions to the problems facing urban bay communities. The project included both office and lab space. The 30,000 sq. feet of office space contains open and private offices, reception areas, conference rooms, a small kitchenette and other smaller support spaces; along with a 20,000-square-foot wet lab area.

The project targeted and received LEED Platinum certification. WSP provided mechanical, electrical, plumbing, fire protection, and building technology engineering services, as well as code consulting and LEED® certification support.

Included in the lab space are two clean rooms for metal and organic analysis. While these rooms are not intended to be certified as clean rooms, they have been designed to meet the standards for a Class 100,000 lab. The project implemented the following energy conservation methods: Increased wall and roof insulation, green roof, external operable windows and fixed shading elements, high efficiency windows, ground source heat pumps, heat recovery, low flow lab hoods, variable frequency drives, dual flush toilets and low flow plumbing fixtures, radiant floors for both heating and cooling, natural ventilation, CO2 ventilation control, ceiling fans for comfort and reduced mechanical cooling, reduced lighting energy levels, daylighting dimmer controls, rainwater harvesting and grey water reuse.

Combined, these conservation methods resulted in an energy savings of 36.6 percent, or 8 out of 10 points for LEED Energy and Atmosphere Credit.