The Terry Thomas Receives
LEED Gold Certification

Certification Symbolic of Weber Thompson’s Commitment to Sustainability

SEATTLE – January 29, 2009 – The Terry Thomas, a four story office building located in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood, earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification for Core and Shell from the U.S. Green Building Council, a national organization that recognizes achievements in sustainable or “green” construction. The Terry Thomas was designed and submitted for LEED Gold certification by Weber Thompson, a full service architecture, interior design, community design and landscape architecture firm.

The Terry Thomas is the location of Weber Thompson’s headquarters. The building is the first privately developed building in Seattle, and only one of two buildings in Seattle, to achieve LEED Gold certification for Core and Shell. Following the LEED Gold certification for Core and Shell, Weber Thompson documentation for LEED Platinum certification for Commercial Interiors for the firm's office tenant improvements in the building is pending.

“This is a major milestone for The Terry Thomas, as LEED Gold certification for the Core and Shell was one of the project’s original goals,” said Scott Thompson AIA, LEED AP, a founding principal at Weber Thompson, and leader of The Terry Thomas design team. “LEED certification is a widely recognized standard for measuring sustainability in buildings. We are very excited our building achieved this.”

The $10.2 million project is Seattle’s first major new office building in decades to feature passive cooling. Instead of air conditioning, the 40,000-square-foot building is cooled naturally through a number of design strategies including operable windows.

The building wraps around a central courtyard with shallow, 35 foot wide floor plates. This design promotes cross ventilation and natural day lighting. On warm days, hot air collects in the courtyard and rises.

In addition, exterior shading devices keep occupants cool by protecting them from excessive solar heat gains. Windows on the building’s east and west sides have high-performance shades – or sunglasses, as the architects call them – to filter out heat. In addition, the roof is coated with a light-colored compound that reflects heat upward. The design team estimates that the building will use 30 percent less energy than a traditional office building with air conditioning.

The Terry Thomas includes numerous other green features. The design emphasizes daylighting with a shallow floor plate that allows light to penetrate from both the exterior and the open-air courtyard. All workstations are located near windows to take advantage of the natural light, improving the quality of the working environment and reducing the need for artificial lighting and, by extension, energy consumption. This is a building where the users actively participate in the temperature comfort levels of their workplace, much like they do at home.

The building is warmed by hydronic heating, or hot-water radiators. The highly efficient radiators are placed along exterior walls and allow for individual temperature control. To maintain air quality, automated louvers in the exterior walls connect to carbon dioxide sensors in the interior spaces and open to circulate fresh air when needed.

“Our new headquarters allows us to demonstrate our commitment to sustainable design, while providing us with a great place to work,” Thompson said. Of the firm’s employees, 63% are LEED-Accredited Professionals.

The Terry Thomas has been recognized numerous times for its strong design and sustainable features. It received a commendation at the 2008 AIA Seattle Honor Awards; was named Sustainable Development of the Year by the Washington State Chapter of NAIOP, and placed third in the Ecommercial (environmentally responsible commercial) category in Eco-Structure Magazine’s inaugural Evergreen Awards.

EDITOR’S NOTE: High resolution images of The Terry Thomas are available on request.

About Weber Thompson
Weber Thompson was founded in 1987 as an architectural firm focused primarily on urban in-fill, mixed-use projects. The firm has since evolved into a highly diversified design agency with capabilities in four complementary design disciplines: Architecture, Interior Design, Community Design and Landscape Architecture. With special attention to its clients’ vision and the environment, as well as careful collaboration between client and design/construction teams, Weber Thompson’s primary objective is to design exceptional, sustainable projects that help its clients find success. For more information, visit or contact Weber Thompson at (206) 344-5700 or