As we share our annual report with you, we reflect on the past year with immense gratitude. We also look ahead to deepening our engagement with the people, projects, and communities that inspire our work. We value the trusting relationships that we have developed over the last two decades, which provides the foundation and inspiration for our work.
This year marks our tenth year in the Bullitt Center which opened on Earth Day in 2013. The building has served as a formative context for the UW IDL. It has been both our home base and a real-world test-bed for a broad array of sustainable design ideas. It has provided us with an in-depth post-occupancy data stream and has been the basis of research on high-performance building operations. It has been the subject of extensive research studies looking at energy, climate-responsive design, daylighting, solar shading, natural ventilation, water-use, health, and occupant behavior-driven energy use. This work has resulted in over 50 publications and countless invited presentations.
The Bullitt Center has also been a catalyst for sustainable design education at the University of Washington. Its initial conception was marked with a series of UW-led design studios created to imagine what a net-zero energy building could be on the site, and it has continued to serve as a case study for innumerable students seeking to understand integrated building systems and to see real-world examples of deep-green building design. It has influenced design professionals worldwide who use it as a benchmark for what can be achieved in building performance. The building has also captured the imagination of the public who have come from five continents to participate in the tours that the IDL continues to provide. So far, we have hosted over 50,000 (!) in-person tours to visitors from around the world.
As always, we would like to take a moment to thank the organizations that make our work possible including the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA), BetterBricks, our Puget Sound-regional utility partners, the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA), the City of Seattle, the American Institute of Architects, the American Society of Heating Refrigerating and Engineers (ASHRAE), the Illuminating Engineering Society (IESNA), the AEC teams that bring us into their process, and our Advisory Board which is helping us expand beyond our traditional boundaries. We look forward to a bright future of expanded collaboration, innovation, and an ever-better built environment for our region.
– Christopher Meek and Heather Burpee