Community College Landscapes

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Science, Math & Nursing Bldg, Kentfield Campus (click on images to enlarge)

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Multi-Use Building, Indian Valley Campus (click on images to enlarge)

Over a 6 year period I worked on multiple projects for the College of Marin as an employee of the firm Royston, Hanamoto, Alley and Abey, who served as the un-official campus landscape architect.  I served as project manager and designer for the landscape for two major building projects, and numerous other small campus improvements.

The new Science, Math, and Nursing building design by ED2 Architects took on a T-shape that created a distinct set of courtyard spaces.  Each of these spaces was given a science theme including:  An Orbit Court with circular patterning and sculptural spheres;  The Seed Garden with biologically inspired elliptical forms of paving and mounded planting areas dominated by species with unique seeds such as the California Buckeye and Pomegranate;  and the Axiom Garden with graphically curved rows of custom fabricated benches inlaid with mathematical symbols.  Several other subordinate spaces continue the science themes, including a periodic chart placed in the paving of the Element Court, custom designed DNA helix tiles that enliven a large retaining wall in the Cellular Court, and hexagonal paving with recycled glass content in two secondary entry plazas.  Sustainability features include the provision of native habitat, minimal irrigation water use, stormwater control on site, and a 2,500 square foot green roof, putting it on track to receive a LEED Gold rating.

At the Indian Valley Campus, a new Multi-use Building was designed by the Oakland architecture firm VBN.  This building serves as a hub of all types of educational activity and the landscape design reflects that by creating a convergence of paths from all over the campus.  These curving paths also serve as a foil to the rectangular building, define a series of outdoor spaces, and embrace the numerous existing native trees.  The pathways leading to the building entrances are defined by colored paving bands and punctuated by oblong planting mounds.  Sandblasted patterns representing native tree leaves add interesting textures.  This project received LEED Gold Certification for its many sustainable features.  In the landscape, large parking lots were reduced in size to accommodate more planting areas, provide space for storm water filtration through bio-swales, and allow for new trees to shade the remaining asphalt.  The planting design is entirely low water use, including many California native species.  Special gardens of purely native plants in front of the building provide a place for students to be inspired to use California natives in their own gardens.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Diamond P.E. Complex, Kentfield Campus (click on images to enlarge)

Comments are closed.