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Humanities Complex, University of California, Santa Cruz

Today the plaza and classrooms are alive and bustling with students—the entire complex has finally come to life.

Dario Caloss
Assistant Dean of Humanities, University of California, Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz, California
85,000 SF
Completed 2006

Client Notes
Create a strong identity and campus presence for the newly consolidated Humanities Division, and encourage interdisciplinary collaboration. Provide a building that respects and enhances the landscape, protecting the fragile and beautiful natural environment of the site's heavily sloping topography and towering redwoods.

Designer Notes
Three naturally ventilated buildings are delicately placed to create a courtyard that provides students and faculty with a common area among the lush beauty of the Santa Cruz campus. The design uses simple forms with readily available and carefully articulated natural materials to complement rather than overwhelm the landscape. To further encourage interaction between students, shared research and lecture spaces face inward toward the courtyard, exposing the life and activity occuring within the buildings. Benches surrounding the courtyard were crafted from trees salvaged from the site, and small meandering pedestrian paths weave among redwoods and buildings, continuing a time-honored campus experience.

SCUP AIA-CAE Excellence in Architecture Merit Award, 2009
AIA Northwest & Pacific Region Citation Award, 2009
AIA Portland Chapter Merit Award, 2009

West Portal Branch Library

West Portal Branch Library

Dexcom Headquarters

Dexcom Headquarters

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