The University of Houston’s Health and Biomedical Sciences Building 1 was named “Best Higher Education Building” by the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI) in the Institute’s 2014 PCI Design Awards.
The award celebrates the distinctive beveled facade of the clinical, research, and teaching facility for this Carnegie Tier 1 research institution and the smart design thinking behind it. Catching the sun as it plays across the building’s surface, the undulating precast concrete facade system is an innovative, high-value design solution that responds to challenges dictated by topography, program, and budget.
The design response uses simple rectangular concrete panels that are triangularly faceted, creating peaks and valleys in the facade’s surface. Shadow and light dance across the windowless expanses in a series of patterns that shift with the passing of time and seasons.
Shepley Bulfinch was the design architect for the project, in association with Bailey Architects of Houston. They two firms are now partnering on the University’s Health and Biomedical Sciences Building 2 project, which is scheduled to break ground in 2015.
Now in their 52nd year, the PCI Design Awards recognize excellence in the design, fabrication, and construction of precast structures and systems.