photo © Timothy Hursley
Already in December 2003, while still under construction, Seattle Central Public Library received the Krentz Award from the British Columbia Region of the Canadian Institute of Steel Construction (CISC).
To create the glass and steel "curtain wall", The Erection Company (TEC) used 4,644 tons of steel, enough to make 20 Statues of Liberty
The Krentz Award “honors outstanding engineering and architectural achievements exemplified through functional and expressive use of steel as the primary structural element.”
Conventional vertical columns carry the weight of the building. Slanted ((2 3/4 inch thick) steel box columns support the books spiral (4 tiers connected by a gently sloping path), carrying the load in a directional manner, or take the lateral loads, created by wind and/ or earthquake movement of the curtain wall.
Structural engineers were Arup Worldwide and Magnusson Klemencic Associates. Steel fabricator was Canron West. Steel erector was The Erection Co. Inc., Hoffman Construction Co was the general contractor/construction manager.
CISC is a national industry organization that represents the structural steel, open web steel joist and steel platework fabricating industries. The group awards annual Steel Design Awards of Excellence; this is the first year the regional award has gone to a project outside of British Columbia. Representatives from three architectural firms and two engineering firms judged the submission. Alexandra Harris, the Library’s capital program director, accepted the award at a ceremony Nov. 20 2003, in Vancouver, B.C. The award is a miniature steel representation of the library structure.