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Seattle Opera Center

Kingspan Insulated Panels – North America

When the Seattle Opera Center’s walls were erected, barriers fell. The 105,000 square feet civic home of the Seattle Opera opened in December of 2018 with the goal of increasing public engagement. The design provides a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the inner workings of opera.

The $60 million Seattle Opera Center is a show unto itself. The public can peer through windows to watch the costuming department at work and performers rehearsing scenes from innovative new productions and some of the most popular operas in history.

Nearly 20 percent of the Seattle Opera Center is dedicated to education. While performances still take place next door at McCaw Hall, the new headquarters has space for community events and children’s activities.

“This will be a way to really help the general public to see the opera in the making,” said Barbara Lynne Jamison, Seattle Opera’s Director of Programs and Partnerships.

With the future of opera in mind, the Seattle Opera Center has a nod to the past in the design of a performance space – reclaimed wood from the Mercer Arena – the venue it replaced.

However, insulated metal panels play a starring role in a building that appears to be mostly glass. Designed by NBBJ architects, the Seattle Opera headquarters incorporates more than 44,000 square feet of Kingspan KarrierPanels to create a modern looking, high-performing building envelope.

The system features KarrierRail to safely transmit loads to structural supports, hidden behind the metal panel. Much like the stage crew of an opera production, the system comes together quickly and efficiently to create the final product. When equipped with Kingspan’s cutting-edge QuadCore insulation foam core technology, the KarrierPanels reach an R-value of 7.2 per inch ASTM C518 @ 75°F for standard PIR, and 8 per inch ASTM C518 @ 75°F.

The KarrierPanels’ high thermal performance, combined with airtightness, serve as a rainscreen for a variety of cladding in a city known for averaging 34.1 inches of rain per year. In addition, architects created a raingarden to catch runoff in an environmentally friendly way. Most of the materials chosen for the inside have low or zero volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

"Our new building is beautiful, magical, welcoming, larger-than-life, and world-class—just like what Seattle Opera aspires to be," said Dominica Myers, Associate Director of Administration just days before the grand opening.

About Kingspan Insulated Panels - North America


Kingspan Insulated Panels – North America is a business unit of Kingspan, a global company operating in more than 80 countries, with over 200 manufacturing facilities. Kingspan Insulated Panels – North America manufactures and markets three groups of products at its U.S., Canadian and Mexican facilities: insulated metal wall and roof panel systems for commercial/industrial construction; insulated architectural panel and façade systems for design-driven projects; and controlled environment panels and doors for cold-storage and climate-controlled warehousing. In addition to its commitment to quality and innovation, the company is on the leading edge of the sustainability movement, offering best-of-class products produced in state-of-the-art, eco-friendly facilities. To learn more visit

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