The Taubman Complex at Lawrence Technological University (LTU), designed by Morphosis and Detroit firm Albert Kahn Associates, provides cutting-edge facilities for robotics engineering, biomedical engineering, life sciences and related programs. Located in Southfield, Michigan, LTU is consistently ranked one of the best technology universities in the country. To appeal to incoming and current students as well as faculty and alumni, the new Complex needed to incorporate technologically advanced design concepts and materials.
Structurflex collaborated with Morphosis to develop the futuristic building façade and designed a scrim made from EFTE, an extremely thin plastic. Often considered “fabric” because of how it moves and can be manipulated, ETFE has the appearance of a hard surface and a reflection like glass.
The ETFE scrim is held off the façade approximately 18 inches outside the 125,000 sqf/11,613 sqm building enclosure, with clerestories behind it. The clerestories allow daylight to flood into workspaces, while the ETFE reduces glare and excess heat that would otherwise accompany the daylight. At night, the building emits an inviting glow.
We are pleased to have collaborated with KieranTimberlake and the outfit of a parking structure on the Rice University Campus. In their blog post, they describe the concepts they employed to create an iconic sculptural element. For more details see the KieranTimberlake blog post.The Increasing Importance of Durability
While tensile fabric has several distinct advantages over more traditional materials like glass, one of the most important may be its ability to withstand severe weather events. Our tensile structures and tensile facades in Miami, Jacksonville, Houston, Fort Worth, Waco, and Atlanta did not sustain any damage or require any repair despite enduring events ranging […]