University of California

San Francisco, California

Located in an Sutro Forest, the Aldea Community Center provides a space for students, faculty, and the community to hold events and meetings in a quiet setting away from the urban core.  The composition of native plants blurs the boundary between the cultivated landscape and the less manicured landscape found in Sutro Forest.  Two ecosystems in the Bay Area are replicated:  coast redwood forest with low growing ferns and perennials; and coastal scrub consisting of evergreen shrubs and grasses.  An informal gathering space is loosely connected to the Center by terraced steps and an accessible curved ramp.  Storm water from the building and paving is directed to planted areas and a bio-retention planting basin.  The project was awarded a LEED Gold certificate.

Jan Longwell, Principal | Cedric Pillard, Photographer