It was announced today that KieranTimberlake has been selected to design a new building for the expanding School of Engineering at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. The building will include cutting-edge laboratory facilities as well as spaces for cross-disciplinary collaboration.
As we celebrate our 30th year in practice, we revisit some of our past works to see how they have matured and uncover what we can learn from them today.
By Fátima Olivieri Completed in 2003 as part of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania, the Melvin J. and Claire Levine Hall is a 48,000 square-foot addition that adjoins two historic structures, the Graduate Research Wing of the Moore School and the Towne Building. This new structure was built as a home for the Department of Computer and Information Science, providing much-needed faculty offices, labs, classrooms, and student amenities such as the Wu and Chen Auditorium, Weiss Tech House, and a café.
With Levine Hall, the university wanted to amplify the work of the School of Engineering and demonstrate its pioneering spirit through architecture. KieranTimberlake proposed a narrow, 6-story, bridge-like addition that would connect the existing buildings and minimize the footprint at street level. Expansive glass curtainwalls were used as the primary facades to make the activities inside the building visible to all and to maximize light and view on a dense urban site.
A mock-up of the marquee we designed for the Suzanne Roberts Theatre in Philadelphia is on display at the 14th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale. The exhibit, called Elements of Architecture, includes the fundamentals of buildings anywhere on earth: floor, wall, ceiling, door, etc. Within the room dedicated to "Facades" are twelve assemblages, including the theater marquee, that have been developed over the course of the past century—from all-glass to curtainwall to green facades.
Zahner, an American engineering design consultancy and fabrication shop, constructed both the mock-up and the actual marquee in its Kansas City factory. Made of interference-coated stainless steel, the curvilinear marquee appears to change colors from different angles and in different lighting conditions. Its dynamic, billowing shape further exaggerates its material ambiguity.
Topping off the structural steel at Congregation Rodeph Shalom was celebrated last week with a ceremonial signing of the highest steel beam by members of the clergy and administration, congregants, and representatives from the construction manager and the KieranTimberlake design team. The beam was hoisted into place by Intech Construction the following morning. In the coming weeks, concrete slabs will be poured for the first and second floors, and infill between the existing building and the new addition will continue.
In a recent profile in the RIBA Journal (Royal Institute of British Architects), James Timberlake reframes the discussion of the new London embassy in the British press. Timberlake discusses how the highly performative design sets a new paradigm for American embassies, integrating a host of environmentally responsible features and creating welcoming public spaces.
Defender of the faith
by Jan-Carlos Kucharek
In 2017 London’s new $1bn US embassy complex will open. James Timberlake, of its architect Kieran Timberlake, feels a realistic appraisal of the design will vanquish its critics.
Kieran Timberlake partner James Timberlake, though silver-haired, remains a strapping fellow. Especially when his face is six inches from yours and he’s hauling you up off your toes by your lapels. Maybe it’s something I said. ‘It’s not a moat,’ he intones slowly, smiling, before resting me back down on my heels and smoothing my collar down, ‘It’s a pond.’ True, maybe the word ‘moat’, suggesting at least defensiveness, is too loaded a meaning; but we are looking over the hole in the ground that’ll be the new American Embassy in London, and what’s the meaning of ‘pond’ anyway? Something in your garden? A component of a SuDS strategy? The Atlantic? It turns out it’s actually all three to Timberlake, hence his robust distinction.
"Defender of the Faith" is no longer available online. It can be found in the May 2014 issue of RIBA Journal, available by subscription.
A recently completed housing infill project adds four new residence halls to the Northwest Campus at University of California, Los Angeles. Conceived in partnership with Los Angeles-based Pfeiffer Partners Architects, the design brings additional density and population to an already dense area of campus with the conviction that a concentrated living-learning environment is a positive force in fostering collaboration and interaction among students.
By Lea Oxenhandler Created by the nonprofit Total Learning Research Institute (TLRI), Mars City is a program that uses a virtual base on the planet Mars as a means to engage high school students in novel science and engineering challenges and get them excited about careers in space and building sciences. Via a BIM model of the Mars City Virtual Base, which was designed by TLRI President Dr. Kerry Joels (a former Smithsonian and NASA scientist and educator), students learn the nuts and bolts of facilities management through simulations.
As part of this program, a team from KieranTimberlake is working with TLRI to build a detailed, realistic Revit model of the virtual Mars outpost that will help take simulations to the next level. The model includes small, private areas like sleeping pods and larger communal spaces dedicated to Mission Control, dining, recreation, and workshops—as well as a garage for the storage and deployment of Mars Rovers. Essential to the simulation is a robust COBie (Construction Operations Building Information Exchange) database built in conjunction with the model. Pulling from information embedded within the model, the database allows realistic simulations of pre-programmed facilities management scenarios. Our Revit model combined with the COBie data is translated to the user interface through a web-based maintenance management platform called WebTMA.
Annual technology award highlights "best of breed" case studies
KT Innovations, an affiliate of KieranTimberlake, today announced that its newly-released Tally™ application for Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has received a Building Information Modeling (BIM) Award from the American Institute of Architects. The award, given by the Technology in Architectural Practice (TAP) Knowledge Community of the AIA, highlights best practices in Building Information Modeling, a technology that uses 3D models to design, inform, and communicate about building projects. Now in its tenth year, the program shows the evolution of BIM from a specialized tool to a staple of architectural design that continues to break new ground.
Noted for Process and Technology Innovation Integrating with BIM
This is the first year the BIM Award has included software, making Tally, a joint software development project from KT Innovations, PE INTERNATIONAL, and Autodesk®, the inaugural recipient in the Process and Technology Innovation Integrating with BIM category. The jurors commended Tally as “one of the first applications that truly uses BIM as a life cycle process. It understands the issues we are trying to model in a certain level of detail.”
The Consortium for Building Energy Innovation (CBEI)—formerly the Energy Efficient Buildings Hub—at Philadelphia’s Navy Yard is a research initiative funded by the Department of Energy and led by Penn State University that seeks to reduce the energy usage of commercial buildings 20% by 2020. We are currently undertaking the retrofitting of a 1940s recreational facility for CBEI’s headquarters, along with the construction of a new classroom building across the street. Both projects aim to be completed by mid-summer of 2014.
Over the past month, structural steel was erected for the classroom building, known as the Center for Building Energy Education and Innovation, revealing the form the eventual building will take. In keeping with the industrial character of the Navy Yard, the structural steel is left exposed in many of the building’s public spaces, making the erection of the steel a critical milestone for the project. Now that the steel is in place, a second floor concrete slab can be poured and work on the exterior façade can begin.
An important aspect of environmental sustainability is the careful management of construction waste through recycling or landfill diversion. Normally, the contractor specifies a waste management company responsible for dumpsters on site, transportation, sorting, processing, landfill diversion, and accounting. In order to ensure that design and construction methods efficiently integrate with the processing of construction waste, KieranTimberlake recently made a visit to a local waste recycling and recovery facility.
Richard S. Burns & Company Inc. is a family-owned business that has been in operation for over 40 years. The company pioneered landfill diversion techniques long before the practice was commonplace because of its ability to monetize the recycling streams. It operates a 10-acre facility in North Philadelphia and employs many individuals in the surrounding community.
Our visit helped us understand what happens once waste leaves the construction site and allowed us to see first-hand how it is repurposed into a variety of recycling streams, often achieving a landfill diversion rate of 99%.