UCSD envisioned a gateway at the entrance to the campus, which included a parking structure and a reimagined visitor’s center. However, they were looking for a design that went far beyond the number of stalls, structural efficiency and gross square footage associated with a parking structure to enrich the campus experience. The Swinerton/Watry Design/Gensler team’s design build solution was selected to deliver the University’s vision.
The team’s design not only enhances the route to the School of Medicine, but also provides a platform to enhance connectivity to the surrounding community, buildings and campus. Lobby “portals” announce visitor's arrival into the structure and the campus through glass-backed elevator towers and projecting canopies while a new pedestrian plaza provides a welcoming porch. The plaza serves as a transitional hub of technological and social connectivity, alternative means of transportation and rest. A reimagined Visitor Center provides an all-inclusive transportation hub and information center.
In addition to connectivity, the architectural design establishes connections to the campus and enhance the visitors experience. The Western and Southern facades dissolve the bulk of the building into the Eucalyptus grove along Gilman Drive through the use of a multilayered facade system that captures and transforms the shadows of the adjacent trees onto a modulated, curving concrete mass. Over that, a panel system comprised of angled, perforated metal planks provides an additional level of abstraction, physically screening the structure and casting varied shadows onto the concrete. The Northern and Eastern faces of the building present a refined and more formal and orderly character to respond to the discrete characteristics of the School of Medicine. Generous light wells at the perimeter and center of the structure emulate the canyon landscape south of the site and bring light and air into the center of the building. These light wells also provide an intuitive way finding cue and celebrate the pedestrian experience with well lit, interesting and pleasant pathways.
Goals of the project include Parksmart Silver equivalent sustainable best practices.
- Owner: University of California, San Diego
- Design Architect: Gensler
- Contractor: Swinerton
- Project Status: Completed 2018
- Parking Stalls: 1,345
- Levels: 6
- Total Sq Ft: 418,725
- Sq Ft per Stall: 321
- Total Project Cost: $35,009,769
- Per Stall Cost: $26,029