The Bullitt Center’s distinct exterior design features a graduation-cap-like roof extension to maximize solar exposure, a curtain wall (window) system engineered by German firm Schücco, and an engineered timber and steel frame made from sustainably grown and harvested naive Douglas fir.
The designers and developers of The Bullitt Center worked to eliminate more than 350 “Red List” common toxic chemicals from the materials used to construct and finish the building. These include heavy metals such as lead, mercury and cadmium (common stabilizers in wiring and roofing materials and paints) as well as phthalates (common in PVC pipes and building membranes).
Working with the City of Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development, the Bullitt Center was able to secure performance-based departures from the local land-use code—allowing for increased floor-to-floor heights to increase interior daylight and reduce the need for electricity.
The Bullitt Center captures rainwater for all uses, including drinking water (pending local approval), which is treated with an ultra filtration system, UV light and activated charcoal, plus a bit of chlorine and then stored in the potable water holding tank.
There are 575 SunPower high-efficiency solar panels occupying 14,303 square feet on The Bullitt Center’s rooftop, which will produce 230,000 KWH per year. About 20 percent of the sunlight, even on cloudy days, that strikes each panel is converted directly into electricity.
The Bullitt Center's mechanical room, where the ground source heat pump and in-floor radiant heating/cooling systems are located, is on full view via glass windows. There are 26 400-foot wells below the building, which increase the in-floor radiant system's efficiency.
Christened the “irresistible stairway” by Bullitt Foundation CEO Denis Hayes, it encourages healthy and electricity-free movement from floor to floor and its front glass wall offers lovely views of Puget Sound.