Architect Rob Peña to present ‘The Greenest Building on Earth’ at Western Nov. 14

Western Today staff

Rob Peña, associate professor in the Department of Architecture at the University of Washington, will speak on the sustainable design and functioning of Seattle's Bullitt Center at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 14, in Academic West Room 204 on the Western Washington University campus.

The event is free and open to the public. It is co-sponsored by the College of Fine and Performing Arts speaker series on Art and Ecology and Western’s Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series.

In his talk, “The Integrated Design Lab: On the Bullitt Center,” Peña will describe the Bullitt Center, a living laboratory distinguished by its composting toilets, strict energy and water budgets, and a conspicuous lack of on-site parking. The 50,000 square foot office building pushes the edges of sustainable architecture with its rooftop cap of photovoltaic cells estimated to produce 230,000 kilowatt hour a year; its 56,000 gallon cistern for water; and its mandate to educate the public through docent-led tours of the building.

Peña teaches architectural design and building science with an emphasis on ecological design and high performance buildings. As a building performance consultant with the UW Integrated Design Lab, Peña works regionally with design teams on the development of high performance and net zero energy buildings. For the past five years, Peña has worked with the Bullitt Foundation, the Miller Hull Partnership, and Schuchart Construction, on the design and construction of the Bullitt Center.

The presentation will include a question-and-answer period. Anyone interested in the topic is encouraged to attend and participate.

For more information, please contact Western’s Huxley College of the Environment at (360) 650-3520.

The College of Fine and Performing Arts offers nearly 300 performances, special presentations and gallery events each year. The goal of the CFPA is to nurture a comprehensive understanding of the languages of Movement Art, Visual Art, Theatre Art and Music in order to create thinking artists and artistic thinkers who will shape culture in the 21st century. In conjunction with the Whatcom Museum’s exhibition Vanishing Ice, the Department of Art is presenting an Art and Ecology Speaker Series, which focuses on environmental issues such as sustainability and climate change.

Western’s Huxley College of the Environment is one of the oldest environmental colleges in the nation and a recognized leader in producing the next generation of environmental stewards. Huxley’s distinctive, interdisciplinary curriculum reflects a broad view of the physical, biological, social, and cultural world, and has earned international recognition for quality. The Huxley College Speaker Series, co-sponsor of Peña’s appearance, is intended to bring together environmentally-minded members of the Western and Bellingham communities to address topics of contemporary environmental concern in the region and the world.