Urban Scholar Highlight: Heather Burpee

Urban Scholar Highlight: Heather Burpee

Heather Burpee is a Research Associate Professor in University of Washington’s Department of Architecture and Director of Education and Outreach at the Integrated Design Lab in the Center for Integrated Design, located in the Bullitt Center. We sat down with her to discuss her work and research on high-performance buildings.

What are your current research interests at the University of Washington?

I am a research...

Full Story >


Urban@UW compiles Faculty Highlights Report for research, teaching and engagement on homelessness

Urban@UW compiles Faculty Highlights Report for research, teaching and engagement on homelessness

As part of its recently launched Homelessess Research Initiative, Urban@UW has collaborated with faculty and staff across all three UW campuses to compile a broad-ranging selection of powerful and robust projects addressing homelessness from a research lens. Check out the Faculty Highlights Report to learn more about these efforts and the people behind them.

Full Story >


Storefront Studio creates vision for downtown block

Storefront Studio creates vision for downtown block

​Wikimedia commons: Public Domain

Three graduate students and their professor from the University of Washington College of Built Environments spent much of this summer visiting Gig Harbor and creating a plan that could change and enhance an area in the downtown waterfront business district.

The Storefront Studio Project, as the endeavor is called, began in June when the students met with a group of about 50 business owners, residents, members of the Downtown Waterfront Alliance and others...

Full Story >


College of Built Environments’ David de la Cruz partners with communities for environmental justice

College of Built Environments’ David de la Cruz partners with communities for environmental justice

David de la Cruz

David de la Cruz has a question about power. “When we think about toxic sites and where they’re placed in relation to where people live, who’s left out of making those decisions?” “Often,” he answers, “it’s the people who live there. It’s low-income communities, working-class communities and communities of color who don’t have a say. They’re the ones who have to deal with...

Full Story >


Why Architects should care about public health

Why Architects should care about public health

Pixabay: Free-Photos: CC0 Creative Commons:

Andrew Dannenberg, an Affiliate Professor at the School of Public Health and the College of Built Environments, writes about the importance of architects recognizing human health: while architects have long recognized the importance of human health —including physical, mental, and social well-being — as part of their mission, implementation sometimes reflects a spirit of compliance more than of aspiration. Design that is limited to preventing harm by meeting building codes and standards forfeits...

Full Story >


What city ants can teach us about species evolution and climate change

What city ants can teach us about species evolution and climate change

By Yair Haklai (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Acorn ants are tiny. They’re not the ants you’d notice marching across your kitchen or swarming around sidewalk cracks, but the species is common across eastern North America. In particular, acorn ants live anywhere you find oak or hickory trees: both in forests and in the hearts of cities.

That’s why they’re so interesting to Sarah Diamond, a biology professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. ...

Full Story >


Birds versus buildings: Rural structures pose greater relative threat than urban ones

Birds versus buildings: Rural structures pose greater relative threat than urban ones

CC0 Public Domain: Maxpixel:

About one billion birds are killed every year when they unwittingly fly into human-made objects such as buildings with reflective windows. Such collisions are the largest unintended human cause of bird deaths worldwide — and they are a serious concern for conservationists.

A new paper published in June in the journal Biological Conservation finds that, as one might suspect, smaller buildings cause fewer bird deaths than do bigger buildings. But the research...

Full Story >


Lake Union building earns awards for energy savings

Lake Union building earns awards for energy savings

Wikimedia Commons: CC Public Domain: Leonardo.Stabile

Henbart LLC announced recently that a year-long study led by the University of Washington’s Integrated Design Lab confirmed that upgrading to View® Dynamic Glass technology in the Lake Union Building significantly saved energy and improved the tenant experience. The report verified annual energy savings of 17.7 percent or 351,604 kWh – roughly $28,000 a year or enough electricity to power 33 homes. The Lake Union Building is a 45-year old building located at 1700 Westlake Avenue N. along...

Full Story >


Urban Scholar Highlight: Christopher Meek

Urban Scholar Highlight: Christopher Meek

​Christopher Meek

Christopher Meek is a faculty member in University of Washington’s Department of Architecture and a director in the Integrated Design Lab in the Center for Integrated Design, located in the Bullitt Center. He teaches during the school year and the rest of his time is focused on research on high-performance buildings. We sat down with him to learn more about his work.

Urban@UW: What are your current research interests...

Full Story >


Toward greener construction: UW professor collab sets markers for carbon across life of buildings

Toward greener construction: UW professor collab sets markers for carbon across life of buildings

​digifly840: pixabay: CC-0 Public Domain

A University of Washington-led research group has taken an important step toward measuring — and ultimately reducing — the global carbon footprint of building construction and long-term maintenance.

The Carbon Leadership Forum is a collaborative effort among academics and industry professionals based in the UW’s College of Built Environments that studies reducing carbon emissions over a building’s entire period of use, or life cycle.

There is...

Full Story >


Bellevue, Renton Among Top 100 U.S Cities for Livability

Bellevue, Renton Among Top 100 U.S Cities for Livability

Huebi: Wikimedia commons: Public Domain

​Watch as King 5 News brings in Branden Born to shed light on the weighting mechanisms employed by a survey recently published on livability.com which ranked Renton and Bellevue among their top 100 cities for livability.

Watch the whole clip on iQmediacorp.com

Full Story >


Challenging the whiteness of American architecture, in the 1960s and today

Challenging the whiteness of American architecture, in the 1960s and today

​George Hodan: PublicDomainPictures.net : CC0 Public Domain

“This book tells the story of how I got a free Ivy League education.”

That’s the arresting opening sentence of Sharon Egretta Sutton‘s “When Ivory Towers Were Black,” an unusual hybrid of memoir, institutional history and broadside against the entrenched whiteness of the architecture profession in this country.

The institution in question is Columbia University and, in particular, its department of architecture and planning....

Full Story >


First UW Livable City Year project reports delivered to the City of Auburn

First UW Livable City Year project reports delivered to the City of Auburn

Image Credit: UW Livable City Year

Teams of University of Washington students have been working throughout this academic year on livability and sustainability projects in the City of Auburn. The yearlong Livable City Year partnership has given students a chance to work on real-world challenges identified by Auburn, while providing Auburn with tens of thousands of hours of study and student work.

Livable City Year connects UW faculty with projects based in Auburn, which are then incorporated into...

Full Story >


Honoring Women Collaborators at Urban@UW

Honoring Women Collaborators at Urban@UW

credit: Jessica Hamilton

In honor of International Women’s Day, we are highlighting just some of UW’s brilliant female professors, scholars, and and change-makers with whom Urban@UW is proud to collaborate. Click on their names to explore their work.

Leadership:

Thaisa Way, Executive Director, Urban@UW; Department of Landscape Architecture

Executive Committee:

Margaret O’Mara, Department of History

Susan P. Kemp, School of Social Work<...

Full Story >


Working with community to tackle homelessness

Working with community to tackle homelessness

Wikimedia Commons, Sage Ross, CC 4.0

Seattle’s rapid rise in homelessness, coinciding with increasing costs in housing and living, have brought significant challenges to economically vulnerable populations in the Puget Sound. In spite of a sense of urgency regionally and in many areas of the country, sufficient resources, effective systemic fixes and broad support still have not come together to end homelessness.

As a research and teaching institution, the University of Washington seeks to develop strategies to address the...

Full Story >