WGBH, the nation’s preeminent creator of public broadcast content, recently consolidated operations from a dozen buildings into a three-facility complex in Boston, MA. MORIN, a division of Kingspan Insulated Panels Inc., provided metal panels for the $85 million USGBC Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design® (LEED) certified headquarters, which includes offices, a 210-seat theater and an 1,800 square-foot performance studio.
Located in the Brighton neighborhood of Boston, the new WGBH headquarters is visible to travelers on the Massachusetts Turnpike. The 310,000 square-foot complex features several attention-catching architectural components, including a 480-foot crystalline beam that houses offices for the creative content providers. The horizontal structure bridges the gap between an existing seven-story administrative office building and a two-story technical operations center, serving both a functional and symbolic purpose.
Additionally, the beam features a key design element––light-emitting diode (LED) panels integrated on the north and west facades. The 30-by-45-foot panel on the west signals arrival in Boston to more than one million vehicles that pass by on the turnpike each week. The panels display images of the science, history, drama and children’s programming that have defined WGBH.
“We think of them as ‘digital murals,’” explains Chris Pullman, Vice President for Branding and Visual Communication at WGBH.
Contributing to the aesthetically impressive headquarters, MORIN provided Exposed Fastener, Integrity Series and Concealed Fastener Panels, totaling 80,000 square feet of metal panels. The exterior wall of the technical operations center was constructed using MORIN’s corrugated aluminum panels. The panels (blue, light grey and dark grey) were used in conjunction with the glass windows and aluminum sunscreens featured on the south side of the building site.
“Not only are the finished panels visually appealing to travelers, they also provide guaranteed sustainability while requiring low long-term maintenance costs,” elaborates Rachel Scholan, marketing manager for Kingspan Insulated Panels Inc. The panels offer economic flexibility and increased weather resistance.
The WGBH headquarters also benefits from other green features, including sensor lighting and heating systems in offices and conferences rooms, a reflective roof, and the use of paints, adhesives and sealants that emit little to no VOCs (volatile organic compounds), creating a safer environment for both builders and occupants.
The project team consists of Polshek Partnership Architects, New York, NY; general contractor Turner Construction, Boston, MA; and installer Karas and Karas Glass Company, Boston, MA.