Located at a busy intersection in Santa Clara, California, the recently completed Thirty75 Tech project nestles into the urban site and creates a new public space against a backdrop of Silicon Valley office parks and freeways.
The project explored the dialectic relationship between performance and expression in architecture. With the intent to seek an architectural response to the market demand of a Class A office building typically defined by “glazed/transparent facades” and an architectural narrative that embodies the technical agenda to increase energy efficiency by reducing heat gain, reduction of glare from direct sunlight, and reduction of artificial lighting in the provision of even daylight for a working environment.
The most notable outcome is an array of fixed aluminum louvers, generated through the synthesis of multiple competing requirements [performative, aesthetic, formal, physical]. This approach re-couples the façade strategically with both the performative and the practical, indexing the needs of the building against its performative requirements while acknowledging its place in both the tradition of architecture and the urban environment.
The realized animated façade is activated with time and light shifting throughout the day and as the viewer moves, changing their vantage point; the memory erased and re-written by the hour. The design intentions become the definition of Architecture that is both performative and expressive.
This state-of-the-art Class A office building also implemented other innovative yet straightforward, quiet yet practical solutions to target LEED Silver rating. Several sustainable strategies were implemented and supported by the architectural, landscape, and building system designs, including but not limited to:
• Design of floor plan and depth of space to allow flexibility and efficiency of occupancy and reduction of reliance on artificial lighting.
• Noise and air pollution mitigation with siting and building envelope design
• Vegetated screens around the parking structure reducing heat gain and improving air quality
• Utilization of native and drought-tolerant plants with efficient drip irrigation programming
• Flexible environmental control strategy via mechanical system design that can adopt both a radiant and traditional air HVAC system.
• Minimal exterior lighting and dark sky compliance
Verse Design carried out the project from its inception to physical realization, from conceptual design to construction and contract administration, coordinating and delivering the permit, bidding, and construction package. The project required comprehensive multi-disciplinary collaboration. We played a pivotal role in the bidding process, supporting the client through general contractor vetting and value engineering. While our comprehensive involvement resulted in iterations of construction documents and permit modification, our efforts added tremendous value to the project and our client.
The program outlined by the developer only included office space and parking. Working closely with the client to redefine and reprogram, we recommended the inclusion of a civic space that engages the community and blurs the boundaries of the site to extend the urban fabric. The result is a project that opens itself up to the community, physically and perceptively.