Pacific Gas & Electric, a San Francisco-based utility company approached us to work as design consultant for their new substation located in the Hunters Point Neighborhood in San Francisco. PG&E had a storied history as a promoter of civic minded architecture, exemplified by buildings such as the Larkin and Embarcadero substations. In this case, a mantle it´s looking to be retaken, by collaborating with designers and master planners to regenerate the Hunters Point area, where a former military base was located. The site is located within a broader development that includes several planned parks and trails.
The client asked us to develop the substation with a public and semi-private program that included a plaza and community gardens. PG&E not only wanted update its infrastructure but foster a tighter knight community through the project. The result, a series of stacked masses was developed not only with the help of computational fluid dynamics to achieve maximum thermal efficiency but with the intent of building the community’s identity through a recognizable sculptural mass. Furthermore, we specified that the structure be built with rammed earth material, making this a warm, approachable building that the community could readily accept. The use of rammed earth also invokes the image that as with any public building its success depends with drawing deeply from and making the best use of local conditions.
Main: Tatiana Bilbao
Partners: Catia Bilbao, Juan Pablo Benlliure
Team Leader: Udayan Mazumdar, Simona Solorzano
Design Team: Sofia Betancurt, Simona Solorzano, Francisco Lozano, Alba Cortés, Mónica Lamela, Shilpa Mevada, Gonzalo Mauleón, Renata de Miguel, Sonia Castañon, Steven Beltrán, Yarla Rangel.
Model Team: Isaac Monterrosa, Victor Castañeda, Veronica Nazar, Eliana Lopez, Ángela Silva, Patricia Morales
Landscape: Creo Landscape Architecture
Structural: Forell and Elsesser Engineers, Inc.
Energy Modeling: Net Zero Energy / Consultant: Thornton Tomasetti
Mechanical, Electrical, & Plumbing Engineer: MHC Engineers, Inc.
Civil Engineer: BKF Engineers
Lighting Designer: Architecture & Ligh
Client: Pacific Gas & Electric
Model: Rodolfo Díaz Cervantes