In May 2016, the Berggruen Institute announced the decision to build its new campus in Los Angeles, at a site in the eastern portion of the Santa Monica Mountains, in recognition of the forward-looking spirit and profound connection to the natural world that are ingrained in Southern California. The principal site for the campus will be a long mountain ridge that was scraped and flattened in the 1980s to cap a landfill.
A landscape vision as much as an architectural project, the design of Herzog & de Meuron in collaboration with Michel Desvigne Paysagiste and Inessa Hansch architecte, calls for the Berggruen Institute to concentrate development within previously graded areas, and thereby limits topographic changes. The design envisions the ridge being restored and transformed into a linear park or gardened plinth, landscaped with drought-resistant plants and incorporating the collection, filtration and re-use of water.
Plans call for a low-density campus featuring meeting and study spaces, scholars’ residences and gardens along the linear park. The campus will follow the existing contours of the ridge and make use of infrastructure that is already in place thereby leaving the surrounding natural landscape undisturbed. Public hiking trails traversing the site will be maintained and enhanced and provide access to the Institute campus. Plans call for preserving approximately 415 of the 447 acres for open space.
MDP Michel Desvigne Paysagiste
Herzog & de Meuron, architectes (Lead consultant)
Gensler, executive architect
IHA Inessa Hansch Architect
PSOMAS, civil enginneer
KPFF, civil engineer
Leighton & Associates, Inc, Geotechnical Engineer
Arup North America, MEP Engineer
Transsolar, Sustainability Consultant
180 ha (447 acres)