The MInC honors the cultural and economic significance of Seattle’s maritime history and celebrates its vibrant fishing industry. More than an adaptive reuse project, the building goes beyond these benefits to promote regeneration and net positive operations as a Living Building. It is all-electric and is powered by a photovoltaic system that generates 105% of the building’s annual energy needs and combines with a ground source heat exchange from deep geothermal wells to provide highly efficient heating and cooling. Rainwater cisterns and a biofiltration garden that captures rainwater runoff from the adjacent parking area and roadways are used to meet net zero water standards. A large polycarbonate façade echoes the gable structure of the historic building and allows diffuse daylight to enter the building, while operable windows foster a healthy interior environment. Much of the century-old heavy timber structure has been reused in the new construction with existing cladding replaced by a high performance triple-glazed envelope.
The jury acknowledged the project’s adaptive reuse approach, respecting the form and mass of the existing 100-year-old building while accounting for a comprehensive program that showcases best practices in sustainable design for the blue-tech industry. The exceptional energy efficiency of the project garnered high praise from the jury. The project successfully balanced passive and active systems, effectively minimizing embodied emissions. The jury appreciated the careful consideration of energy efficiency throughout the design, contributing to a reduced environmental impact and enhanced sustainability.
The wise use of materials allowing for natural ventilation and optimized daylight was also highly commended, along with the water treatment and reuse strategies. Furthermore, the jury recognized the project’s success in carefully considering the issue of urban density as the building aims to incorporate different program elements within a relatively compact volume. The creative integration of an innovative space-use program showcased a forward-thinking approach to sustainable urban development, optimizing land use and promoting vibrant and diverse communities.