Wellesley Celebrates Global Flora’s Milestone with “Topping Out” Ceremony
This summer on Science Hill, construction crews were hard at work on the Global Flora greenhouse project. On September 5, the project reached a significant milestone: Wellesley senior leadership, faculty, students, staff, and members of the Turner Construction Co. met under the newly formed frame for the building’s “topping out” ceremony to commemorate the progress of the building.
According to a Slate article, the tradition of the “topping out” ceremony is “a celebration of a so-far safe construction site, an expression of hope for the secure completion of the structure, and a kind of secular blessing for the building and its future inhabitants.”
In the fall of 2017, the Global Flora project won a prestigious LafargeHolcim design award in the most significant global competition for sustainable design. Among other innovations, Global Flora will feature a series of indoor landscapes arranged in wet and dry biomes designed to replicate the physical conditions—soil components, temperature, light, and humidity—that sustain vegetation in its natural habitat. The building expands on the rich history of botanical education and research at Wellesley College that dates to the 1920s.