Marin County Civic Center

Built in
1957 – 1966
Location
San Rafael, California, United States

Introduction

The Marin County Civic Center, a building for public use, is not like most of the buildings in the United States, impressive, built on a gigantic scale, offering a monumental aspect. This provides a pleasant environment, human, with many references to the landscape.

Situation

The site of the Marin County Civic Center was a huge park with a lake and three small hills. The complex binds the hills as a bridge, offering views over the park and water, built in North San Pedro Road, San Rafael, California, USA.

Spaces

Paseo garden with glass ceilings

By the middle of the two main buildings runs a landscaped walkway inside, illuminated by glass ceilings.

First floor

It is basically an elongated plant that changes direction in order to join the central hill and the other hills.

• Offices

The offices are arranged so that one side, looking to the hills and the other, the interior garden. Partitions of different offices are mobile and can be adapted to changing space needs of each department.

Second floor

On this floor is the cafeteria that opens onto a triangular bow with a paved terrace for lunch, a garden and a pool.

Third floor

The court is the administrative building in a circular intersection that houses a library on the third floor.

One of the most important features of the building is the aluminum balcony railings drawing geometric shadows on the walls in constant motion. Wright used to call “music Visula” to this type of drawings

Structure

• Arches

Fachada arc

The large arches on the ground floor bearing structure while hanging above the arches are mounted on the outer edge of the balconies.
These arches are like awnings on the windows that are located 1.50 meters behind the arc.

• Balcony

The exterior balconies and interior boulevard facilitate access to the various departments.

Materials

The facade is covered with cement stucco painted ocher, taking part in the landscape.

The electrical outlets, telephones, heating and ventilation are spaced in a grid patterns that provide flexible office.

Aluminum was used in the railings of the balconies.

The roofs of the two main corridors have a glass cover that illuminates an internal landscaped promenade.

Drawings

Photos

Architecture is better explained in images

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