National Bio and Agro Defense Facility

Rendering showing the front of NBAF

NBAF’s 574,000 sf facility contains biocontainment BSL2, BSL3/Ag and BSL4 laboratories for developing countermeasures for foreign animal diseases, providing advanced testing capability for threat detection and countermeasures for animal/zoonotic diseases.

The National Bio and Agro Defense Facility (NBAF) is under the joint direction of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Agriculture with a primary mission of studying foreign animal, emerging, and zoonotic diseases that threaten U.S. animal agriculture and public health. NBAF will provide the U.S. the ability to develop vaccines and other countermeasures, and train veterinarians in preparedness and response to these diseases. 

The facility is 574,000 sf and includes biosafety level (BSL) 2, 3 and 4 labs, and a dedicated central utility plant. NBAF will include research capabilities for large animal biosafety level 4 (ABSL-4) containment for the study of high-consequence diseases affecting large livestock. 

Rendering showing the side of NBAF

The facility is designed to withstand a Category EF5 tornado with top sustained wind speeds of 230 mph, vehicular and debris impact, and is also designed for progressive collapse. This design allows the building to stand if some of the structural members are compromised or destroyed.  

An atrium connects the public elements of the program, offices and entry sequence. The containment program is wrapped around the atrium, creating a dense plan that shortens travel distances. The massing of large research programs is broken down in scale and nestled into the site’s rolling hills, resembling a collection of elements.  

Sustainable features include strategies of water management, green roofs, onsite renewable energy and automated building system controls.