This new small building is meant to host a private full immersion Italian K-12 school, in the Mission district of San Francisco. After a community meeting exposed serious concerns about the original design of the facade, I set out to re-imagine the relationship of the school with the street.
In order to open the first level to the life on the sidewalk, I used full height structural glass fins which completely de-materialize the first level of the building as perceived from the sidewalk, while I also reduced the structural impositions using thin, diagonal braces, and diagonal steel columns that also contribute to the later support system of the facade, thus avoiding bulky moment frames.
Above, in order to to reduce the heat gains of this southern facade I designed a metal brise solail screen that serves multiple purposes: it holds the urban edge of the block, it provides a strong relationship with the historical Hall next door, while it increases its permeability from top to bottom, toward the public street.
I used a simple Grasshopper script to design and generate the metal screen and locate it in the Revit model. Also, I have obtained an amazing resin 3D print from the great folks at Carbon 3D (see last two pictures.)
VBN Architects retained my visualization services to study solutions for this campus' accessibility upgrades. Several options were designed and illustrated in 3D; also actual photographs of the campus were used to create photomontages for the final presentation. Although the elevator tower was the main solution for the renovation, we also illustrated a funicular alternative.
Gordon H Chong & Partners was responsible for the design of the International Hotel and St. Mary's Catholic Center Complex, a 140,000 mixed-use development project located on a prominent site at the nexus of San Francisco's Chinatown, North Beach and Financial districts. The 140,000 sf. complex is comprised of 105 units of senior housing, a new K-8 school and community recreation facilities occupying space over a 3-level, below-grade 150-car parking structure. The program components are organized on the tight urban site to take advantage of shared access to light and air by use of a central courtyard, while still maintaining a sense of identity and clear entry. The Catholic center is covered from the public and active Kearny Street while the housing tower is entered from Jackson Street, which is more pedestrian in scale and has less automobile traffic.
I was directly involved in the visualization and design of the interiors of some of the main teaching stations (classrooms).
This planning exercise was proposed to the school board as a court-oriented scheme where the classroom block and the gymnasium building were the legs of an "L" shape. This shape hosted the outside space with the multi-function / amenities room nested between them. The main entry to the small campus was designed at the corner of the "L" configuration.
After the still renderings, I also produced a short animation to demonstrate the features of the design.
The Salesians retained Chong Partners to complete an extensive master plan of their aging campus. After determining the goals and the needs of the school, and after analyzing the shortcomings of the existing infrastructures, we proposed several interventions, including additional buildings and extensive remodeling of the existing structures. The aim was to meet current code and requirements. Finally, I produced a comprehensive video highlighting the master plan features to help the Salesians marketing team in their found rising efforts.
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