Sleeping in Seattle
Project: citizenM South Lake Union Hotel
Client: citizenM Hotels
Executive Architect: Gensler Seattle
Architect/Interior Designer: concrete Amsterdam
At first glance, the citizenM South Lake Union Hotel in Seattle is a cheerfully colored building lit up with contemporary artwork. Inside are 264 tiny but sleek guest rooms. What you can’t see is how the hotel was put together from 228 modules.
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This wasn’t a simple matter. Seattle is in a high-seismic zone, where modular steel components can’t typically be used. That’s because the units have to be stiff in order to endure shipping, and the seismic code requires a flexible structure. The designers hit on a creative solution: each module was shipped with temporary bracing, which was removed onsite so the structure could meet the seismic code.
According to the team, using modular construction shortened construction time by four months and greatly reduced local construction impacts because there was less equipment idling.