HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology

Huntsville, Alabama

The HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology (HAIB) is an independent bioscience research institute focused on cancer, cell based therapeutics, regenerative medicine and diagnostic technologies. The institute co-locates nonprofit and for profit enterprises in one 270,000 square foot facility to quickly move discoveries from lab to market.Dr. Richard Myers, formerly the chair of the Stanford University Department of Genetics and Director of the Stanford Human Genome Center, serves as Director. Nine (9) Eminent Scholar/Principal Investigator teams conduct non-profit research adjacent to twelve (12) for-profit biomedical Associate Companies. The buildings common spaces create strong connections that bring this diverse interdisciplinary community together.Approximately 75% of the buildings assignable spaces are flexible laboratories for high throughput RNA/DNA screening, bio-safety level-3 containment, vivarium, biology stability testing, tissue array, tissue culture, cell culture, microbiology, analytical chemistry, bioscience clean labs, biology PCR, microscopy, flammable and hazardous waste storage, freezer farms, glassware washing, sterilization and autoclaves. The building houses the HudsonAlpha Genome Sequencing Center which relocated from Stanford University to the Institute. High quality food service, meeting space, offices and administrative support amenities anchor the projects common space.The client had three primary design goals they wished to achieve. The first to create a highly flexible and adaptable building infrastructure that would accommodate the needs and minimize first costs to potential start-up biotechnical companies. The second goal: to design a facility that creates community and promotes interaction, was achieved by co-locating leadership and research teams in the atrium spaces, connecting people in a way that most buildings cannot achieve. Much of the interior focus was to inspire collaboration through the shared social spaces such as the café, lounge, library and meeting rooms. By creating a welcoming environment the design team was able to help foster a sense of connectivity. The third goal was to embrace the high tech features of the building. While the elevators and engineering services of the building are exposed, the overall impression of the building is one of warmth and comfort. This was achieved by using very tactile natural materials such as stone, wood and water, generous natural light and views to beautifully landscaped garden spaces, which contrast the laboratory environment. The detailing is high quality and is arranged to relate the architecture to a “human scale,” intimate and intelligible.The HudsonAlpha Institute is pursing LEED-EB Certification. Sustainable design features include enthalpy wheels (heat recovery), occupancy sensors tied to lighting, natural day lighting and high efficiency water controls that reduce energy and water consumption by ~25% over baseline.

project scope

270,000 SF


HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology

HudsonAlpha is a world-class facility…The research they can accomplish is truly amazing. They routinely use state-of-the-art genomic technologies that make many in the science community envious. — Dan Bullard, Ph.D., director of the genetics and genomic sciences department of genetics, University of Alabama at Birmingham