Mass Timber 1, a pilot project that realizes a vision for the future of offices that promote health, connect to nature, and address the urgent global need for repeatable, affordable, and more sustainable new buildings. Google’s first mass timber building, the 180,000 SF, 5-story building sets a new standard for high-performance and sustainability-oriented office construction. Embodied carbon is reduced by 47% compared to an equivalent steel building, and by 96% when considering the carbon sequestered in the mass timber.
The building can be thought of as two separate regions – the single-height spaces and the double-height spaces. The single-height spaces are used primarily as meeting rooms and back of house areas, whereas the grand double-height spaces on the second and fourth floors are predominantly used for employee workstations. Balancing the requirements of the different spaces, the team at Equilibrium worked with the design and construction team to develop appropriate structural solutions in each space. In the single-height spaces CLT panels span between opportunistically placed glulam beams. In the double-height spaces a materially efficient layout of primary and secondary glulam beams is used along with a thin CLT panel. Equilibrium fully detailed all mass timber connections enabling the clean and minimalist aesthetic that was required.
To achieve the architectural vision, a number of innovative structural techniques are used throughout the building. To achieve the façade modulation, 14’ long floor slab cantilevers are created using composite CLT panels. Expression of the large buckling-restrained braced frames, used to resist the very large seismic forces, was another mandate. Our team developed a system which placed the braced steel frames inside the timber gravity system, therefore carrying zero gravity loads, the braces could then be left exposed to view with no need for additional fireproofing.
Five years in the making, we were proud to be the Structural Engineer of Record and part of the team that brought this game-changing building to life.
Sunnyvale, California, USA
Engineer of Record
Michael Green Architecture and SERA