BUILD Blog


Sun Screens Regional
March 19, 2008, 6:34 pm
Filed under: Architecture, Seattle, Suburban Architecture, Urban Architecture

Sun Screens Regional Title
We know, we know – there isn’t enough sunlight in the northwest to screen. But that’s precisely why we pale Seattleites need the screens. When that dubious yellow ball emerges sporadically in July and August we’re not quite sure what to think – better put something in between yourself and that foreign object, just to be safe. Like a screen. Seriously though, the sun here is a rare and precious resource, we’re grateful to get the yellow rays when we can and for that reason the quality of light is significant to us. Here are a handful of projects incorporating sunscreens that we’re proud of because they use the light as much as they screen it.

UW Medicine Building at 815 Mercer by Perkins + Will, 2008
Simple in concept and sophisticated in appearance this well crafted skin system is a recent addition to Seattle. The screens are made from rolls of stainless steel metal fabric.

UW Medicine

UW Medicine

UW Medicine

UW Medicine
[Photos by BUILD llc]

Seattle Art Museum at 100 University Str by Allied Works, 2007
The dynamic panels open and close depending on the amount of light desired inside – thereby changing the fabric of the buildings façade.

Seattle Art Museum

Seattle Art Museum

Seattle Art Museum

Seattle Art Museum
[Photos by BUILD llc]

Madrona Residence by Vandeventer + Carlander Architects, 2007
The sun screen does a clever job of maintaining the structure’s geometry while the actual envelope changes plane and allows for indoor/outdoor space.

Madrona Residence

1264 Eastlake by Steinhart, Theriault & Anderson, 1956
Simple horizontal wood slats add privacy to a very exposed building and screen direct light. This simple box demonstrates that a sun screen need not be expensive or highly technical to look and function nicely.

1264 Eastlake

1264 Eastlake
[Photos by BUILD llc]

Mercer Education at 1240 116th Ave NE, Bellevue by BUILD llc, 2007
The screen panels incorporate galvanized steel frames, perforated steel sheets and ipe wood louvers to give the composition warmth. The large steel frames were designed to fit between existing concrete structural fins.

Mercer Education

Mercer Education
[Photos by Art Grice]

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3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Oh, I love the building that looks like it’s just perched there on a boulder. And the wood slats are a great idea on the residence. Very cool looking. :)

Comment by Lindsay

1264 Eastlake was an architects office, now i think it’s the home of howard s wright’s charitable foundation. i’d be interested to see how they got away without using any handrails on the shaded balcony – there is a door to this space, and it looks like you can walk out on it… was one of the first projects i saw upon moving to seattle.

some other local sunscreens (mostly horiz. instead of vert):

mahlum – seminar II: http://www.aia.org/aiarchitect/thisweek05/tw0422/0422cote_9seminar_b.jpg

miller|hull – discovery park: http://www.millerhull.com/images/nonresidential/Discovery3.jpg

gustafson guthrie nichol’s promenade @ mccaw hall

miller hayashi – high point library

johnston – south park library

paul thiry – University Unitarian Church

oska – chillmark house: http://www.oskaarchitects.com/gallery_cache/93/430_380/Chilmark-House-PV-015.jpg

Comment by mike

Mike – thanks for the links. That Mahlum building is outstanding.

Comment by buildllc




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