The John W. Olver Design Building at UMass Amherst is a truly innovative structure. In this building, the designers at Leers Weinzapfel, Equilibrium Consulting, and Simpson Gumpertz and Heger have created a trendsetting timber structure that is warm, inviting, and sustainable.
Even timber structures require steel fasteners and connections, and there are very few steel products that can match the organic warmth and feel of wood like a steel casting. CAST CONNEX had the pleasure of supplying architecturally exposed steel cast connectors for elegant king-post trusses comprised of timber compression struts and steel cable tension elements. In each truss, the compression and tension elements connect to a central hub. Due to the non-symmetric layout of the space, each king-post truss has a unique geometric configuration.
CAST CONNEX supplied 56 identical Timber End Connectors to Nordic Structures for use at the ends of the glulam compression struts. On one end the castings connect to the timber via glued-in threaded rods and on their other end the castings connect to the central hub or upper gusset plates via a pin connection.
The attention to detail by the design team created a stunning space in a tremendously unique building which is surely a welcome addition to the UMass Amherst campus.
Owner: University of Massachusetts Amherst
Architects: Leers Weinzapfel Associates
Structural Engineers: Equilibrium Consulting Inc. and Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc.
Construction Manager: Suffolk Construction
Timber Supplier: Nordic Structures