In approaching the design of a new lecture hall for UC Davis – the first significant addition to classroom space on campus in more than a decade – Bohlin Cywinski Jackson worked collaboratively with the University to create a healthy, responsive and adaptive environment for students. Recently designated LEED Gold and designed to be Zero Net Energy ready, the 16,500 square-foot California Hall features a range of sustainable design strategies and innovative technology.
The lecture hall benefits from plentiful natural light from a series of recessed skylights, greatly reducing lighting loads throughout the day. The building program includes a state-of-the-art projection system to support new teaching methods, including 15’x25’ displays that deflect light from other sources. From the massive screens (linked to a touchscreen controlled by the professor), to easily accessible USB ports and outlets spaced every two seats, thoughtful and responsive technology is found throughout the lecture hall. A photovoltaic-ready roof structure was integrated into the project, as well as a flat structural floor beneath the sloped plenum floor, creating flexibility to convert to smaller instructional areas in the future if needed.
Located in the heart of campus, California Hall opens onto an outdoor plaza with ample bike parking. Site planning took into consideration solar orientation and shading, while the building incorporates high-performance envelope design.