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December 8, 2021

Weber Thompson offices receive 3-Star Fitwel certification

Photo by Meghan Montgomery [enlarge]
The seven-story 72,000-square-foot Watershed building was designed by Weber Thompson and completed in 2020.

Weber Thompson's new office, located in the Fremont Watershed building at 900 N 34th St., has been awarded a 3-star Fitwel certification – the highest level of the certification program. The office shares this award with only one other project in Seattle. Weber Thompson's decision to pursue a Fitwel-certified office space arose from the firm's dedication to health and wellness and the newly awarded 3-star rating reflects this commitment.

Fitwel is the world's leading certification program focused on building occupant health and well-being. In order to achieve Fitwel certification projects need to meet criteria in twelve “health impact categories” that include impacts surrounding community health, supports social equity for vulnerable populations, instills feelings of well-being and promotes occupant safety and increases physical activity.

Using a scoreboard created by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and US General Services Administration, the Fitwel system addresses all-types of built environments. Weber Thompson's office scored 126 out of 144 available points.

“There are several compelling reasons this project proved to be such a great candidate to receive the 3- star Fitwel rating, beginning with Watershed's exceptional siting adjacent to the water, the Burke Gilman trail, and dozens of nearby amenities in Fremont,” said Nicole Winn, principal and Fitwel ambassador at Weber Thompson, in a press release. “This site checks all the boxes for nearby recreation, exercise, and community engagement.”

Many Fitwel requirements were already built into the space, which include a central location with an impressive 96 Walk Score, a room reserved for nursing mothers, locally sourced Red-List compliant materials, and more.

Being located within Watershed helped Weber Thompson's office space achieve the Fitwel certification. Watershed is a high-performance office building that helps Seattle move toward a fossil-free future. The project has an emphasis on rainwater. It collects and reuses over 200,000 gallons of water on site annually and diverts and cleans over 300,000 gallons of runoff before entering Lake Union through green stormwater infrastructure on site. Watershed is a partnership between CoU, LLC and Spear Street Capital. Watershed was also designed to meet Seattle's Living Building Pilot Program, which includes meeting petal certification from the Living Future Institute's Living Building Challenge for three petals. This rigorous pilot program provided a framework for nearly every decision made for the project from the core and shell building design to the design decisions in the tenant improvements.

“Providing additional support is the building design's use of the stair as a focal point, thereby encouraging its use,” Winn continued. “Creative site amenities, an internal commitment to providing additional interior amenities, and health and wellness programming for the staff factored in as well. There really was full firm buy-in on the guiding principles of Fitwel from the start.”

Weber Thompson's Office at Watershed additional team members include: Landscape Architect, Weber Thompson; Interior Designer, Weber Thompson; General Contractor, Schuchart Construction; Engineer, DCI Engineers and MEP/Sustainability Consultant, WSP.

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