Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects:
Founded on the conviction that design can help address some of society’s most pressing challenges, the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation at UC Berkeley, is devoted to introducing sustainable design innovation at the center of engineering education and university life. The project was conceived by the College of Engineering as an interdisciplinary hub for students and teachers from across the university who work at the intersection of design and technology. It is designed as both a collaborative, project-based educational space and a symbol to the region of the University’s commitment to sustainable innovation.
The tiny corner site, formerly a volleyball court, lies at the northern edge of campus within a dense, diverse context. Two 4-story engineering buildings border the site on the west and south. Single family residences and apartment buildings line the street to the north. An existing two-level basement lies directly beneath 35% of the site.
The program, intended to accommodate up to 2,000 students per semester, includes flexible design studios, project rooms, support spaces and fabrication equipment rooms containing a variety of rapid prototyping tools and equipment.
The PV arrays have enabled the building to use 90% less energy than the national median for university buildings per EPA Target Finder.
The 80 kW PV system:
Allowing the architects graceful, yet practical roof design to reach its full potential, Sungevity, the PV designers needed to match the best solar panel technology. They settled on a custom system that uses two different types of solar panels: high quality polycrystalline panels at the centre of the installation and unique double glass frameless, bifacial panels on the edges. The outer panels were supplied by Sunpreme, a company taking PV solar installations from purely functional afterthought to visually attractive roof-top designs. The product has a wide range of urban applications, and will be an important part of a move to bringing together clean power generation with good design.