Natural History Museum of Utah copper facade

Photo by Jim Nista


Natural History Museum of Utah

Salt Lake City, UT

Market: Cultural


Division of Facilities Construction and Management, State of Utah




2014 Honor Award for Excellence in Architecture for a New Building, The Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) & AIA Committee on Architecture for Education
2012 Jury’s Choice Excellence in Concrete Award, American Concrete Institute Intermountain Chapter
2012 Excellence Award, Society of American Registered Architects, National Chapter
2012 Copper in Architecture Award, Copper Development Association Inc.
2012 Best of the Best Government/Public Building, Engineering News Record
2012 Award of Honor, Society of American Registered Architects/New York Council
2012 American Architecture Award, The Chicago Athenaeum
Natural History Museum of Utah
Natural History Museum of Utah
Field water testing

Set amongst the foothills of the Wasatch Range, the Rio Tinto Center serves as the new home for the Natural History Museum of Utah. The dramatic building facade is clad with 42,000 sq ft of standing-seam copper installed in horizontal bands suggestive of Utah rock formations. In addition to the copper, the complex facade features multiple cladding systems that come together at different angles and planes. SGH reviewed the building enclosure design and worked with the project team to evaluate alternatives to improve cost and performance.