RescueAir works with University Mechanical to make the tallest building in Bellevue, WA one of the safest.

Bellevue, WA is a suburb of Seattle and the third largest city in the state.  The City recently approved a major new development in its downtown core. The project is located at 555 108th Avenue, and is anchored by a 42-story office tower.

This 600-foot tower will stand 150 feet taller than any existing building in Bellevue. Underground, it will feature seven levels of parking. The overall project size is around 1.5 million square feet.

The project is emblematic of the changes occurring in Bellevue.  Downtown Bellevue is transforming into a denser work/live neighborhood, with new high-rise apartment buildings and office towers replacing low- and mid-rise buildings of only a few stories.

Over the past six years, the City has approved more than a dozen new high-rise projects. And city leaders are preparing for a lot more growth in the downtown area, with an eye toward allowing taller buildings.

One of the ways Bellevue prepared for this explosive growth is by requiring firefighter air replenishment systems (FARS) in these buildings.  FARS give firefighters access to life-saving air supplied inside the structure, just as water standpipes provide access to water. Firefighters can refill their air bottles during an emergency in less than two minutes.  It’s the safest, fastest, and most efficient way to provide air replenishment to firefighters, and a must in high-rises where the manual delivery of replacement air presents severe logistical challenges.

Rescue Air Systems was chosen to design the FARS system for the 555 108th Street project.  When complete in 2023, the tower will be not only the tallest building in Bellevue, but also one of the safest.