Metro Atlantic/Central Base Operations Building and Expansion

The Atlantic/Central Base Operations Building located south of downtown Seattle, is the final phase of the 22-acre, $100 million King County Metro Atlantic/Central Base Expansion project that began in 2002. The project in its entirety includes the Communications and Control Center (LEED Gold certified); the Tire and Millwright Shop (LEED Certified); renovations to existing maintenance buildings; expanded bus parking; and street improvements to Sixth Avenue in Seattle.

The two-story, 44,000 square foot “Ops” building is home to more than 50 full-time employees, and serves as a contact point and area of respite for 1,200 Metro drivers, daily.  It incorporates sustainable strategies in every aspect of design and construction, including highly reflective paving, vegetated open space, an exterior vegetated wall or “green screen” – which provides shading for the west facade, as well as visual appeal along Sixth Avenue, and native or adapted vegetation that reduces irrigation needs.  Inside the building, one can find low-flow fixtures, highly insulated walls and roof, natural daylighting, and a high efficiency variable air volume HVAC system with economizer and demand control ventilation, resulting in a projected savings of almost 50% over conventional systems.

The design process began with an in-depth schematic design process.  O’Brien & Company directed a series of sustainable building workshops designed to identify sustainable building goals and chart paths for LEED Silver, Gold, and Platinum.   Following the workshops, O’Brien provided support for a series of research papers, tours, and topical meetings on relevant green building issues for design team and county staff.  The investment in early research and analysis of sustainable design options allowed the selected strategies to be fully integrated into the design process, so the best solutions were part of project parameters and budget from the beginning.

O’Brien & Company continued to provide support through the construction phase of the project and was pleased to see the project earn LEED Gold certification in 2012.  Along the way, O’Brien also assisted the County in completing LEED certification on the Communications and Control Center and the Tire and Millwright Shop.  The Shop had been completed earlier following green design practices but had not been fully documented for LEED.  These two projects earned LEED Gold and LEED Certified respectively.