Interdisciplinary Science Building - PW733
The Interdisciplinary Science Building (ISB) was officially dedicated on April 21, 2022, in a celebration with the campus community and invited guests. The building opened for instructional use at the beginning of the Spring Quarter. Work continues in two labs and their associated support spaces on the fourth floor as a separate public works project.
The ISB adds essential teaching labs and active learning classrooms to meet the growing need for degree programs in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields. The building features teaching labs for Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science, and Marine and Coastal Science (MACS), along with flex lab spaces and active learning classrooms.
Flexible spaces allow for shared use and greater interaction and collaboration among STEM and non-STEM disciplines, support the Washington state goal of increasing STEM graduates, increase opportunities across the STEM fields, and reduce barriers to fulfilling completion requirements. Funded by the Washington State Legislature, the ISB will also enhance Western’s ability to expand pre-healthcare degrees to help address a statewide shortage in healthcare workers and increase the number of graduates in pre-healthcare and STEM fields.
The ISB is located south of the Biology building and provides a sky bridge connection to Biology. The building is designed to serve as a campus gateway, following campus geometries and shifting dramatically in plan from the lower to upper levels. Shifts in form relate to the tiered levels of the campus and create unique experiences at each level of the building, allowing the structure to harmonize with the plaza and surrounding natural landscape. Natural daylight enhances the learning environment and is regulated on the southern façade with horizontal shading to provide comfort and energy efficiency while allowing great views out to the campus.
The project is pursuing a LEED Gold rating by targeting sustainable approaches such as optimizing energy and water usage; reusing materials; reducing light pollution with dark night and low footcandle lighting; encouraging alternative transportation with electric vehicle charging stations and access to public transportation; and diverting 85% of construction waste from landfills. The University contracted Perkins & Will of Seattle and BN Builders of Seattle to design and construct the building.