In designing the University of California, Santa Barbara’s new LEED Silver Student Resource Building, architect Sasaki Associates, San Francisco, collaborated closely with UCSB students, who voted to increase their fees to self-fund a building dedicated solely to student organizations. The students requested a colorful, contemporary space that would bring together several departments and resource centers, including the Women’s Center, Campus Learning and Assistance Services, and the American Indian Center.
The 69,500-sf building is composed of a pair of three-story wings flanking a vertical forum space (above) that connects resources on all floors to foster interaction. Students and staff can gather on the open metal bridges traversing the forum, and wood screens create privacy zones. The forum also plays a key role in the building’s natural ventilation system, drawing air through the floors and out the clerestory.