The Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex (ISEC) at Northeastern University is designed to advance the University’s cutting-edge, interdisciplinary approach to global challenges in the areas of sustainability, security and health. As described by the architect, Payette, "The building’s guiding principle is to enable the fortuitous collisions, conversation and collaborations that break down disciplinary divides. It is organized as a community of faculty neighborhoods surrounding the atrium, replete with nooks and lounges for informal conversation and study. A mix of wet labs, dry labs and computational space on each floor supports interdisciplinary research teams creating the materials, products and technologies our future demands." The envelope has a cutting edge design and shape, and its exterior façade features gray ribbed metal panels on the eastern side and curved bronze-coated aluminum fins on the western one. Furthermore the facility incorporates various environmentally friendly features in order to reach high level of energy performance; for instance shading elements are incorporated into the double glass façade to reduce heating loads and are an integral part of the building’s overall form. The project is LEED Gold®.
ISEC at Northeastern University received the 2018 Harleston Parker Medal, an honor from the Boston Society of Architects (BSA) that recognizes most beautiful building in Boston.
Fluid in appearance, the building is rigorously tuned; the shading elements that give it its striking character are essential to its performance...Throughout planning and design, we used energy modeling tools to analyze solar heat gain and shape the building for optimum performance. Iterative simulations, employing parametric modeling and custom compositing software, developed the exterior shading system as an integral part of the building’s overall form. The precision of this process allowed mechanical equipment to be tightly sized to handle the greatly reduced heating and cooling loads.
Design & engineering, manufacture and installation of approximately 11,600 sqm (125,153 sq ft) of double façade with integrated catwalk and sun-shading elements.
OWNER: Northeastern University
CONTRACTOR: Suffolk Construction
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