Founded in 1907 in Oakland, CCA educates students to shape culture and society through the practice and critical study of art, architecture, design, and writing. The college is undertaking a unification of the school to its newer San Francisco campus by academic year 2012–22.
The site is located in a low-rise, formerly industrial area between the CCA campus and the Potrero Hill residential neighborhood, an area going through a transformation, with new higher-density multifamily residential development around an existing one-block city park.
The building will provide affordable apartments for over 200 students in the form of four-bedroom/two-bath apartments housing up to eight students. Each apartment has a shared living area and eat-in kitchen and each floor a laundry and common room
The exterior design has taken the hybrid industrial and residential context into account with the ground floor is activated by board-formed concrete piers, slate tile walls, high ceilings, tall storefronts, and multiple entrances. The upper floors are segmented into residential-scale forms separated by glazed bay windows and recessed hallway windows
The design and construction of 75 Arkansas was guided and evaluated by the GreenPoint New Homes Multifamily Rating Certification System, which sets standards for a residential green building. The rating system recognizes performance in five categories; community, energy efficiency, indoor air quality and health, resource conservation, and water conservation, to evaluate the sustainable benefits of the building.
75 Arkansas is anticipated to achieve a platinum rating, the highest rating category. Some of the environmental measures taken include wood framing over concrete podium, soil improvements to mitigate potential seismic liquefaction, a rooftop solar panel farm which produces renewable electricity and hot water and healthy interior materials: bamboo plywood, polished concrete, low-VOC flooring.
“At Blattner Hall, our mission was to inextricably combine great design, affordability, community integration, and environmental sustainability to achieve a high standard for CCA’s evolving campus,” said Richard Stacy, principal at Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects.