In order to reflect its mission, the Botanical Research Institute of Texas wanted to use the natural properties of the earth and plants in the construction of the new headquarters. It was also the Institute’s desire to be as green as possible and to achieve LEED® Gold certification or better.
To help reflect that mission, over 11,000 square feet of WOODWORKS Access Custom ceilings in a Bamboo Patina finish from Armstrong were selected for use in the facility.
H3 interior designer, Lauren Davino, explains that bamboo ceiling panels were selected for a number of reasons. The first was sustainability. “The bamboo is FSC®-certified and rapidly renewable,” she says. “From a sustainable point of view, it was the obvious choice.”
Aesthetics were another consideration. “The color and texture of the bamboo ceiling worked well in the space and with the other woods used in the building,” Davino notes. “We needed one more wood to tie everything together, and the bamboo allowed us to achieve our goal.”
She also notes that five different panel sizes were used in the ceilings. “As designers, this provided us with a fun way to play with the ceiling,” she says. “And, instead of one continuous ceiling, we installed the panels in a series of large clouds with a reveal every ten feet.”
In addition, accessibility was a factor. The building uses a geothermal HVAC system, so no large air handling units were needed. Instead, numerous air handlers, much smaller in size, are installed above the ceiling. The WOODWORKS Access Ceiling System hook-on panels provide the accessibility maintenance crews need to get to the units.
Finally, Davino notes that the Institute more than met its goals. It recently received LEED-NC Platinum certification.