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Van Andel Institute Phase II   

February 17, 2012
Van Andel Institute Phase II

Courtesy Jeff Dykehouse

Van Andel Institute Phase II
Grand Rapids, Mich.

The 240,000-sf Phase II addition at the Van Andel Institute has been awarded LEED Platinum certification by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). We provided structural engineering services to Rafael Viñoly for the project, which nearly tripled the institute’s lab space. The facility, which opened in late 2009, is only the second LEED-Platinum building in Michigan. The eight-story, steel-framed building has two levels below grade, 15,000 sf of parking and features segmented convex glass roofs evoking the rapids of the nearby Grand River. Its unique glass-roof, open-layout laboratories provide natural light and abundant space. Additional sustainable features include a vegetated roof, 13,000 sf of photovoltaic panels and a 33,000-gallon rainwater storage tank to collect runoff for irrigation and use in the cooling tower. The facility was constructed on a brownfield urban site in large part from locally extracted or manufactured materials. The inclined site required underpinning an existing building more than two levels. Special anchors were used during excavation so ground below (mostly sand) would not give way—this was carried out without disturbing research taking place in the adjacent laboratory.