LMN Architects has announced the groundbreaking of the new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Building at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). The building will serve UCI's Henry Samueli School of Engineering, the Donald Bren School of Information & Computer Science, and the School of Physical Sciences.
Inspired by the University's commitment to interdisciplinary science and engineering research and it's potential to solve the challenges of today and the future, the building is conceived as a catalyst for research innovation as well as a new model of cross-disciplinary collaboration. The six-story, 204,750-gross-square-foot facility will set a new standard for the future of research programs at UCI. Every aspect of the building's design is conceived to optimize research functionality, foster social performance, and enrich the overall campus experience.
"Leading-edge science deserves a facility that supports exploration, now and into the future," stated John Chau, AIA, LEED AP, Partner at LMN. "By studying the building program both holistically and as a set of individual parts - offices, labs, circulation and gathering spaces - we were able to conceive of each as an armature suited to its own set of needs. In this way, we are able to maximize the ability of each space to adapt at its own rate and for its own purpose."
The ISEB's site design employs pedestrian-oriented spaces that connect the building into the overall fabric of campus landscape, enhancing the existing social, environmental, aesthetic and functional qualities of the campus. The L-shaped building will be organized as three distinct volumes: a 'Jewel Box' glass-and-concrete tower that will provide collaboration and office space for the Principal Investigators who lead the research; a glass and precast concrete "Lab Bar" to house a variety of highly adaptable laboratories; and a transparent, glass-wrapped connector dubbed the "Community Hub," which will connect the Jewel Box with the labs and serve as the focal point for collaborative engagement across research disciplines. An outdoor courtyard on the fourth floor of the Community Hub will provide a public gathering space, bringing daylight deep through courtyards and plazas around the building.
Won through a design-build competition, the project is the fourth consecutive building on campus to be designed and delivered by LMN Architects and Hathaway Dinwiddie. Project completion is anticipated for fall 2020.
Images: LMN Architects