Project DescriptionFROM AIA NATIONAL:
Founded on the conviction that design can help address some of society’s most pressing challenges, the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation at UC Berkeley, is devoted to introducing sustainable design innovation at the center of engineering education and university life. The project was conceived by the College of Engineering as an interdisciplinary hub for students and teachers from across the university who work at the intersection of design and technology. It is designed as both a collaborative, project-based educational space and a symbol to the region of the University’s commitment to sustainable innovation.
The tiny corner site, formerly a volleyball court, lies at the northern edge of campus within a dense, diverse context. Two 4-story engineering buildings border the site on the west and south. Single family residences and apartment buildings line the street to the north. An existing two-level basement lies directly beneath 35% of the site.
The program, intended to accommodate up to 2,000 students per semester, includes flexible design studios, project rooms, support spaces and fabrication variety of rapid prototyping tools and equipment.
FROM AIA SAN FRANCISCO:
Built and operated by the UC Berkeley College of Engineering, the Jacobs Institute fosters interdisciplinary engagement across the University, welcoming undergraduate students from other departments, inventors, tinkerers and over thirty student clubs to an environment of creativity, collaboration and innovation.
The tiny corner site, formerly a volleyball court, lies at the northern edge of campus within a diverse context. Two 4-story engineering buildings border the site on the west and south while an existing two-level basement underlies nearly a third of the site. A variety of residential buildings line the street to the north.
The compact building makes efficient use of its tight urban site, cantilevering over the existing basement while retaining a south-facing solar court. Large, flexible design studios are bordered by project rooms, instructor’s offices and fabrication equipment rooms with a variety of rapid prototyping tools. Transparency and overlooks reveal the hum of creative activity within. The south wall opens to the sun for optimal daylighting and passive solar benefit, connecting to the adjacent Wozniak Terrace and the campus beyond.
At the exterior, the building presents a new threshold to the UC campus – a “beacon of innovation” that communicates the values of the Institute and the University. Glassy stairs project outward, glowing after dark to welcome visitors from the campus to the south. A cantilevered photovoltaic array ascends to the north, expressing the ecological values of the Institute to the University and the public. The array provides 58% of the building’s energy, reducing total building energy by 90%.