On 26 June, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and City of Philadelphia moved to a green phase of reopening, which lifted stay-at-home and business closure orders. Since then, we have begun to carefully welcome KieranTimberlake staff members back to the office with a hybrid model of working remotely and a controlled population of about 20 people in the studio per day. All staff members also continue to work from home and juggle their responsibilities while caring for others.
At our studio (aka Ortlieb's Bottling House), we are now hosting occasional design team meetings in small groups, physically distanced, and fully masked. Those who have seen KieranTimberlake's studio know we have ample room for distance, abundant natural ventilation, a managed building system for environmental control, and flexibility to arrange ourselves across multiple work platforms for this next phase of a new reality. We have the broad technical capability to host meetings with both in-person and remote participants. And lastly, our travel is limited to instances of direct support of projects under construction, and is in full compliance with local, regional, and state advisories.
It has been refreshing to be working well together in this more broadly defined "office space” and progressing our firm's projects and goals. We are especially pleased to be joined by four talented interns with us for the summer and into the fall from architecture programs around the country, including Rice, Harvard, Carnegie Mellon, and the University of Texas at Austin.
We continue to be grateful for the partnership of our clients, consultants, collaborators, and staff as we work through the nexus of 2020 challenges together.
KieranTimberlake landed on Fast Company Magazine's list of Most Innovative Companies of 2020. The annual round-up of thought leaders recognized architecture firms' progress in reducing embodied carbon in the industry. The KT Innovations app Roast , an occupant comfort survey app that lets architects and facilities managers create surveys, collect responses, and visualize data for green building accreditation, received a shout-out in the nomination:
8. KIERANTIMBERLAKE For figuring out where an office is cold or drafty with its Roast survey app, so issues can be fixed
KieranTimberlake is a rare example of a midsize firm that has a thriving research and technology division. The company is deeply focused on connecting spaces and has developed its own software to measure things like energy usage to inform architecture. An architecture firm that acts more like a tech company.
We grieve as we witness the horrific patterns of racism, bias, and white privilege in our country. We denounce the senseless murders of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky, Ahmaud Arbery in Glynn County, Georgia, and countless others at the hands of a cruel, violent, and unjust system. We condemn the wrongful acts that are hidden and swept aside, without recourse, without change.
These crimes, and the routine transgressions against Black lives must end. The protests bring into sharp focus the pain our communities of color face every single day. The emotional, physical, and social damage is profound. We must examine ourselves, listen and hear, and work harder with our communities of color to build a better society.
KieranTimberlake is committed to building a more just and equitable world. We call upon the architecture and design community nationwide to do the same.
University of Toronto Magazine recently published an article highlighting the school's efforts to reduce its carbon footprint, including a new science building designed by KieranTimberlake. Located on the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) campus, the building will offer cutting-edge laboratory, support, and office space for wet research sciences as well as a headquarters for several key departments. The labs were planned in concert with UTM researchers and are designed to maximize collaboration and sharing of specialized equipment.
The new science building is part of an ambitious long-term commitment to cut the university's carbon footprint to 37 per cent below 1990 levels by 2030. Numerous features of the design reduce consumption in a laboratory building that would traditionally be highly energy intensive, including ultra-low velocity fume hoods in the labs, heat recovery systems, and demand control ventilation. A ground-source heat pump field located under the building, and a rooftop photovoltaic array allow building systems to run almost entirely on electricity.
The final design performs more than 50% better than ASHRAE 90.1 - 2013 energy targets, placing it among the most energy efficient lab buildings of its kind in North America.
In April 2020, the US Embassy in London received a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification from the United States Green Building Council. LEED is the most widely used green building rating system in the world and the Platinum designation is the highest possible rating a building can receive.
The East End Transformation of the Danforth Campus at Washington University in St. Louis was awarded an Excellence in Planning Honor for 2020 from the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP). The award recognizes excellence in creating an integrated plan for an entire geographic or functional area of a campus. Five design firms, including KieranTimberlake, Michael Vergason Landscape Architects, BNIM, Moore Ruble Yudell, and Perkins Eastman worked together to fulfill the vision.
The Engineering Research Center at Brown University has received a Lab Design Excellence Award for 2020. Established by Lab Manager in 2019, these awards recognize the best new projects in research laboratory design, planning, and construction. A panel of industry experts evaluated each project for its innovation, sustainability, and safety.
The Engineering Research Center, which was awarded an Honorable Mention for Innovation, opened in 2017. It unites three formerly disconnected laboratories, offering welcoming open space to the larger university community, and creating a new Engineering quadrangle. The core of the building's program is a suite of state-of-the-art, multi-disciplinary laboratories that are designed to adapt to shifting research types. Loft-like and accessible, the labs encourage dialogue among researchers and include connecting flexible workspaces that maximize daylight and views.
On April 6, 2020, the board of directors of the National Institute of Building Sciences voted to approve the installation of four new officers, including KieranTimberlake founding partner James Timberlake. Timberlake will hold the office of Vice Chair of the 21-member board. The President of the United States appoints six members while the remaining fifteen are elected from the building industry community.
KieranTimberlake has been named to Fast Company magazine's prestigious annual list of the World's Most Innovative Companies for 2020. The list honors the businesses making the most profound impact on both industry and culture, showcasing a variety of ways to thrive in today's fast-changing world.
“Innovation and invention have driven us ever since we started KieranTimberlake over thirty-five years ago. We invent software, innovate in material science, and lead in sustainability and carbon reduction, all while exploring form and design in architecture,” says Partner James Timberlake. “We are thrilled to be recognized by Fast Company for our work in all of those areas.”
Our redesign of Washington University's East End appeared in Architect magazine's February 2020 issue. The article emphasizes the project's energy efficiency, carbon reduction, and focus on preserving history on a 120-year-old campus while also keeping pace with innovation.
It highlights the university's goal, announced in 2010, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020—while doubling its square footage with new construction. The efficiency of the five new buildings we designed (all of them achieving at least LEED Gold) helps meet that ambitious goal.
The university architect reported that a student experience survey had uncovered a desire for more welcoming architecture. The new buildings meet this need, creating a more inviting experience for students through transparent glass facades and informal spaces that contrast with the existing formal Collegiate Gothic architecture.
With regard to the new buildings, Partner James Timberlake is quoted as saying that the goal was to make them “all work together as a community of new buildings, yet also make the other buildings around them better. There's this oscillation between that new language and the existing one, and the glass buildings become a logical extension, creating something unique while still being very much part of Washington University.”
The project also restores the expansive green space of Tisch park, moving parking and roadways underground via the innovative East End Garage, which is designed with the flexibility to accommodate additional programs in the future.