University of Washington

Life Sciences Building

Green building for booming STEM program.

Offering the state’s largest STEM program and projecting a 21% growth in life sciences-related careers, the University of Washington needed to better meet student demand and recruit additional skilled faculty than its 1950s-era greenhouse and associated buildings allowed. The new 25,000 sq ft greenhouse and replacement Life Science Building (LSB) provides open, modular, high-density labs suited to collaborative interdisciplinary research, facilitating next-level science education transcending historical disciplinary boundaries in a unique sustainable setting.


Seattle, WA


  • Perkins&Will - Design Architect

LEED Status

LEED Silver

Building Size

207,000 square feet


  • 2023 AIA Awards - Architecture
  • Winner in Architectural Design, Educational
  • WAN Bronze Award 2021 in Education Built Category (the only US education built project in top 3)
  • Merit Award
  • COTE Top Ten 2021
  • ENR Northwest 2019 Best Projects Award
  • Merit Award
  • Award of Citation
  • Honor Award
  • Building of the Year 2018
Projected growth in life sciences careers

Building performance-improving measures include chilled beams in labs and spaces with high equipment loads, chilled sails and radiant floors in office spaces along the building’s south façade, and innovative solar glass fins with integrated PV panels. The project was delivered following LEAN practices in an IPD model.

The new LSB has 16 research labs, associated offices and conference spaces, 4 undergraduate research teaching laboratories, growth chambers, and imaging facilities, supporting 40 principal researchers. The current generation of undergraduate students learns state-of-the-art research methods working alongside faculty, graduate, and postdoctoral students.

Project Leaders