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Friday, Sep 22, 2023

UCSD Opens New $180M Engineering Building

EDUCATION: Franklin Antonio Hall Maximizes ‘Circulation of Ideas’

A huge steel spiral staircase that winds its way up the four stories of the newly finished Franklin Antonio Hall at the University of California San Diego sets the tone for the building’s unique interior.

Albert Pisano
Jacobs School of Engineering

The staircase in the $180 million building is extra wide – made that way so researchers, students, and visitors who use it will bump into each other as they pass, sparking conversations that can lead to collaboration.

The building was “designed and built in such a way that it maximizes the circulation of people and ideas,” said Albert Pisano, dean of the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego.

“The idea is that this building is completely focused on scientific discovery and engineering application, specifically health and happiness, so things that make your life easier and things that make your life healthier,” Pisano said.

A Beacon

Installed by a crane at the center of an atrium that links the two butterfly wings of the building, the stairway also exemplifies the building’s connections to the surrounding environment with its wood risers and wood tones.

Allen Lynn
Project Manager
McCarthy Building Companies
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“It is a masterpiece,” said Allen Lynn, project manager of McCarthy Building Companies, the general contractor on the project.

Lighted at night so it can be seen through the glass walls of the atrium, “it actually glows so it’s kind of a beacon inside the building,” said Ryan Bussard, design principal of Perkins & Will, the architect.

The 186,000-square-foot Franklin Antonio Hall building is the new home of the Jacobs School of Engineering and was designed to blend in with the environment in the adjacent canyon and achieve a LEED platinum rating – the highest ranking indicating its energy efficiency and sustainability.

Enticing Experts

The building is named for the co-founder of Qualcomm who died earlier this year, a UCSD graduate who contributed $30 million toward the construction of the building that bears his name.

Ryan Bussard
Design Principal
Perkins & Will

Franklin Antonio Hall was formerly opened in late September but students won’t be taking classes there until January.

Built on a 4.9-acre site that was a parking lot, much of the exterior of the building is covered with large vertical fins reaching from the second floor to the roof.

The fins shade the interior, but they also are performed to allow those inside to see outside. The perforations vary in size, with larger ones at the bottom so as not to block the views and smaller ones at the top to provide the most shading.

Solar panels that cover the roof will add to the building’s sustainability.

Mark Rowland
Principal Architect
University of California San Diego

There are wood finishes throughout the building meant to tone down the concrete that forms the bulk of the building, said Mark Rowland, UCSD’s principal architect.

McCarthy also used a special concrete, which has a soft white tone to it, “so it’s not that dingy, cold gray,” Rowland said.

Glass walls make up much of the interior of the building, with classrooms and research labs facing each other to further encourage collaboration.

The top floor of the building includes spaces for company executives to meet, mingle, and exchange ideas with students and researchers.

UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering

Founded: 1982
Dean: Albert Pisano
Business: College within UC San Diego
Enrollment: 10,000
Website: www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu
Contact: 858-534-6237
Notable: The Jacobs School currently encompasses six academic departments: Bioengineering, Computer Science and Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Nano Engineering and Structural Engineering.


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