UCSF Medical Center Parking Structure

Once an isolated industrial site on the eastern waterfront of San Francisco Bay, the Mission Bay neighborhood has experienced a drastic transformation in the last decade. About 3,400 people now live and work in this former brownfield, which today features offices, condominiums, restaurants, a farmer’s market, pedestrian paths, light rail, and — the driving force behind the area’s rebirth — a vibrant hub of world-renown biotech and medical research institutions.

UCSF demanded a high-performance parking structure that embodied the innovation for which they are known and advanced the look and feel of this revitalized, growing neighborhood. This new 10-story, 627-vehicle capacity parking structure represents the initial phases in a larger transportation strategy for UCSF’s growing campus.

Often the first and last interaction visitors have with the medical center, the parking structure is designed to convey a sense of place and destination, provide a welcoming reception, and offer a clear sense of direction. The upper levels of the structure are shrouded with a custom anodized aluminum louver system in warm earth tones. The vertical louvers change orientation from panel to panel, creating a quilted pattern through play with light and shadow. The varied spacing and orientation facilitate natural ventilation and control light spill from the garage at night in order to reduce the visual impact on neighbors. Vertical fins define two-story view apertures and modulate between the pedestrian scale and the garage’s large volume.

Elevator waiting areas are strategically placed to frame views of the outdoors. At the base of the building, a secure and open pedestrian zone is enhanced with cement plaster soffits, a painted white concrete frame, extensive lighting, white perforated metal panels, street trees, and plantings. This project was a Design-Build competition, won by Rudolph and Sletten and WRNS Studio.

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