The Lab Building of the Future Is NEXT

Chad Yoshinobu, Gensler
Nathan Butt, Gensler

Gensler's Future of Science Building research project began with reimagining how a science building could be a better caretaker of our tenants, differentiate itself for our developer clients, and how it decarbonizes itself for our world. This session will share insights into what our future-ready science building will function like, feel like, and look like—all measured by data. The design incorporates interconnecting stairs for the entire building and access to the outdoors on every floor—the #1 rated science tenant amenity.

Learning Objectives

  • Address the benefits of using mass timber, including up to 80% less embodied carbon to build, 30% faster speed to construction due to kit-of-parts methodology, sustainability, and well-being;
  • Discuss sustainability ideas to reduce the operational energy of a science building by 30%, provide up to 40% energy use intensity (EUI) savings better than a conventional lab building, produce 50% less greenhouse gas emissions, and the reduction of lab-to-office ratio;
  • Examine the benefits of natural ventilation for the workplace and how to provide 100% natural ventilation 34% of the year, which impacts energy use and gives tenants access to fresh air; and
  • Demonstrate how to design a lab building from the inside out for tenant optimization of the structural grid based on a lab bench module, maximum tenant lease depth flexibility, and an amenity-rich design.


Chad believes in the aggregation of diverse design lenses from life sciences, office buildings, tech workplace, and hospitality. Over the course of his 25+ career, Chad has shaped a diverse range of environments from life science campuses + buildings to office towers, hotels, food + beverage, retail, and tech + life science company interiors.

Nathan views the built environment as human habitat and designs to encourage human interaction, sustainable living, and a connection with the larger ecology of a place. He has an extensive background working on projects ranging from small building additions and renovations to designing city extensions.


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