Disocery Hall, UW Bothell, Glumac

Great Projects

Discovery Hall: Building for a Strong STEM Future

The University of Washington Bothell campus had two important needs. As a burgeoning destination for students in the Snohomish and King counties of WA, UW had to increase its enrollment capacity. They also needed to meet the academic demands of its students, local community, and regional industry, specifically in the field of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

The new Discovery Hall was the answer to both, now serving an additional 1,000 students and housing the UW Bothell School of STEM. With sleek style, impressive sustainability features, and flexible space programming, the new 74,000 sf building opened for classes in fall 2014. The facility includes general meeting spaces, offices, lecture hall, classrooms, and laboratories for chemistry, life science, physics, electrical engineering, software development and geographic information systems.

Disocery Hall, UW Bothell, Glumac
UW Bothell Discovery Hall. Photo credit: Lara Swimmer.

Environmental stewardship is the hallmark of UW Bothell. As such, Discovery Hall demonstrates the best in an energy-efficient and ecologically thoughtful facility. The building design integrates many sustainability features. Operable windows, chilled beams, displacement ventilation, heat recovery and solar hot water reduce energy use. Efficient lighting, daylighting and lighting controls also minimize energy needs. Low-flow plumbing fixtures economize water needs and a stormwater catchment system filters and feeds water to the campus’ 58-acre wetlands. Last, the east-west orientation and high-performance glazing optimize solar control and reduce heating and cooling loads. As a result, anticipated energy use comes in 30% lower than a comparable facility and is targeting LEED Gold certification.

Discovery Hall represents a much-needed catalyst to support an estimated future 350 career-ready graduates per year and facilitate greater STEM programs. It is also an embodiment of UW Bothell’s commitment to sustainability and an encouraging legacy for the future of higher education.


2014 AIA Seattle Award of Merit
2014 AIA Portland Merit Award


Owner: University of Washington
Architect: THA Architecture
Landscape architect: Walker Macy MC/CM
Mechanical/electrical engineer: Glumac
Structural engineer: PCS Structural Solutions
Civil engineer: OTAK
GC/CM (General Contractor/Construction Manager): Lease Crutcher Lewis
Lighting Designer: Biella Lighting