The project was founded by two faculty members at UCSD in order to create synergies between academic and private sector researchers and the first academic-industry incubator site in San Diego.
To accomplish this, the project inverted the traditional laboratory design - pushing the laboratories to the outside of the building and placing the office areas at the interior. This resulted in generous amounts of daylight being introduced into the lab spaces while office areas now surround the atrium - promoting collaboration and reinforcing a sense of community.
The atrium serves as a living room for the project - where people are encouraged to collaborate and share their on-going research and discoveries. The atrium also serves as the central lung for the building – filtering air and daylight into the adjacent offices through operable windows. A series of floating, glass clad, collaboration pods are arranged within the space – two within the atrium and a third directly outside of the atrium’s glass wall. Prefabricated mass timber trusses and bridges were placed within the atrium, literally bridging between the research wings – increasing connectivity and connections.
The three primary wings are each housed within architectural frames of white concrete and buffered from the Western sun by terraces lined with terra cotta. Within the architectural frames, glazed lab blocks each respond to their specific environmental orientation with a variety of solar shading devices. These strategies enabled the project to be the first on the campus to exceed a 20% savings over the latest Title 24 energy requirements.
All the information about how to enter the 2022 WAN Awards is here.
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