Herzog & de Meuron has revealed plans for its design of the new Berggruen Institute campus in Los Angeles. Founded in 2010, the Berggruen Institute works to develop ideas and craft political, economic, and social institutions apt for the 21st century. The Institute’s principles will be reflected across the 447-acre campus along with an emphasis on sustainability. The project, which Gensler will assist on as executive architect, will include an extensive planting program to mitigate construction impact.
“The Berggruen Institute’s architecture is intertwined with a specific landscape concept. The rough coastal scrubs and woodlands on the hills and ridges of the property within the Santa Monica mountain range will be juxtaposed with an abundance of specific and diverse gardened areas,” explained Jacques Herzog of Herzog & de Meuron. “The current barren ridge where the campus will be sited is transformed into a self-sustainable oasis by means of a water system within the Institute’s campus based on harvesting, collection, cleaning and re-use. Such transformative, immediate impact is also what the Institute and its fellows aim to achieve through their work on today’s most urgent concern: the economic, political and ecological imbalance in our societies between scarcity and plenty.”
The southern end of the campus will feature a horizontal structure known as the “Frame,” which will be elevated 12 feet above the ground. The 137,000-square-foot Frame will support the main functions of the institute, accommodating spaces for studying, living, and socializing. Spaces will include mezzanines, lofts, meeting rooms, offices, studios, and dining and reception areas. A large courtyard garden will be installed at its center, and be appointed with a 250-seat lecture hall housed within a sphere installed roughly 45 feet above the roofline of the Frame. A smaller sphere will be constructed atop the Frame, functioning as a water tank.
Occupying the center of the campus, a “Scholar Village” will be positioned north of the Frame and will entail roughly 26,000 square feet of residential units for scholars and guests. All 15 units will be designed with entrance courts and living gardens. The eastern ridge of the campus will be home to the 26,000-square-foot “Chairman’s Residence,” which will house a library and conference room in addition to dining and residential facilities.
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