Art Stable / Olson Kundig Architects

© Tim Bies/Olson Kundig Architects

The seven-story, five unit adaptive live-work space is designed for residents who want to both live and work in the city. Art Stable, is situated on a plot of land previously housing horse stables. A recipient of the 2010 AIA Citation Honor Award, the urban infill project features large art doors, manually operable by a custom-designed hand wheel and hinge. The 80′-5″ hinge terminates at a rotating davit crane on top of the building.

A collaboration between architect, client, engineer, builder, and fabricator resulted in a hinge mechanism that opens 8 foot tall by 12 foot long steel clad doors on all seven levels. The vertically stacked art doors face the alley side of the building and provide a great ease in moving large materials and/or art pieces into and out of each unit.

Architects: Olson Kundig Architects
Location: Seattle,
Design Principal: Tom Kundig, FAIA
Managing Principal: Kirsten R. Murray, AIA
Project Manager: Kudo-King, AIA LEED AP (Construction Documents and CCA) and Jim Friesz, AIA LEED AP (Schematic Design through Design Development)
Project Architect: Jeff Ocampo, LEED AP
Project Team: Sky Lanigan, LEED AP, Wing-Yee Leung, LEED AP, Ming Yuan
Graphics: Kevin Scott
Project Area: 25,556 sqf
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Courtesy of Point32, Tim Bies/Olson Kundig Architects

© Tim Bies/Olson Kundig Architects

The custom-designed hinge and art doors are located on the east facing alley-side of the building. Users can open their art door up to 75 degrees by turning a large hand wheel. The wheel connects to a threaded rod which goes through the building envelope and connects to a sliding pivot bolt fastened to the movable portions of the hinge on the exterior of the building. The threading on the rod and the oversized wheel ensures that each 2,250 pound door can be opened easily and held open at the desired angle. The crane can then be used to pick up objects from the alley and raise them up and into the unit, or remove objects from the unit.

art door elevation
hinge detail

Steel framed windows measuring 8 feet tall by 8 feet long are supported on a second similar hinge. Views on the west side of the building provide resident with just the right amount of drama – the city and Cascade mountains beyond.

Courtesy of Point32

The use of concrete, steel and glass draws upon the warehouse typology of the transitional industrial neighborhood. Each unit has an average 11’ ceiling height and floor-to-ceiling window walls. Interior build-outs will be determined by each unit’s owners, who will also be able to punch windows into the north façade of the building, providing a personalized balance between privacy and transparency. On the street side of the building, oversized hinged windows also open, allowing for cross-ventilation.

© Tim Bies/Olson Kundig Architects

Sustainable Features

• A geothermal heat pump system runs in loops through the augercast structural pilings of the building’s foundation. This is the first time this system has been used in the US.
• In-floor radiant heating and cooling
• Natural ventilation
• Can accommodate future use of solar/photovoltaic technology
• Flexibility of space anticipates the possibility of non-residential use

© Tim Bies/Olson Kundig Architects

Civil Engineering: Coughlin Porter Lundeen
Structural Engineering: DCI – Engineers
Mechanical Engineering: PAE Consulting Engineers
Code Consultant: Kinsman Code Consulting
Energy Consultant: Patrick Hayes
Envelope: RDH Group
Acoustical: BRC Acoustics & Technology Consulting
Geotechnical: ZZA Terracon
Gizmo Engineering Consultants: Turner Exhibits, Inc
Foundation Drilling: Kulchin Foundation Drilling Company
Contractor: Exxel Pacific General Contractors
Mechanical Contractor: Hermanson Company, LLC
Developer: Point32

Art Stable Hinge
Architects: Olson Kundig Architects
Design Principal: Tom Kundig, FAIA
Managing Principal: Kirsten Murray, AIA
Project Manager: Kevin Kudo-King, AIA LEED AP
Project Architect: Jeff Ocampo, LEED AP
General Contractors: Exxel Pacific Construction
Design Collaborators and Construction Oversight: Matt Stodola and Nick Miller
Design Collaborators and Fabricators: All New Glass
Engineering Consultants: Turner Exhibits, Inc

View this project in Google Maps

* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Art Stable / Olson Kundig Architects" 26 Nov 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 24 May 2015. <>
  • rjl

    Thermal bridging is sexy.

    • Kit

      I’m glad someone said it.

  • jimmy

    it’s located in seattle not fargo… I like the straight to the face design method of this office. and turner exhibits does some nice work… and i like that its not another building covered in hardie board. great project, the whole list of people (team) should be proud of this one.

    • mt

      Thermal bridging proves bad engineering, despite the Location. I suppose in Seattle they have low temperatures, too. So water will condense and we have water inside. ON PURPOSE?

      And who has drawn this bad details of the hinge?

  • Tim Bies

    I believe this building features the world’s largest hinge – if not, it’s definitely close. It’s really impressive to see up close and in person. It’s always a fun challenge to shoot Olson Kundig projects, especially when Turner is involved – adds an entire new “dimension” to the subject that always results in a new approach for each project.

  • n khb

    The detail of the operable window is great. But it is the only thing seperating this design from standard. Why not capitalize on the window design….eight of the many standard windows are operable with this detail.. Olson Kundig projects are normally well thought out and thoughtfully executed but this one falls short of their standard.

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