Walker Hall building transformation, University of California, Davis 

Walker Hall building transformation, University of California, Davis, USA Architecture Photos

Walker Hall building transformation at University of California, Davis

January 28, 2022

Architecture: Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects

Location: Davis, California, USA

Walker Hall building transformation University of California Davis 

Photos: Bruce Damonte

Walker Hall , University of California, USA

Walker Hall is an adaptive reuse of a 1927 building at the core of the University of California, Davis campus. The project transformed a vacant, seismically unsafe building into a graduate and professional student center with meeting rooms, a lecture hall, and sophisticated active-learning classrooms that serve the entire campus. It coalesces history, community, and advanced educational environments at a hub of university life. 

Walker Hall building University of California Davis 

The original 34,000-square-foot building, designed to house the university’s growing agricultural engineering program, was one of the earliest buildings on campus. Its two-story Spanish style wing faces north to the central quad and housed classrooms and offices. To the south, three lofty, clear-span wings served as large shops for hands-on research, design, and fabrication of farming machinery. 

Walker Hall building University of California Davis 

Walker Hall building University of California Davis 

The revitalized building is an important addition to the university’s graduate and postgraduate programs, which account for only 20% of the total student body. It supports graduate students’ academic, professional, and personal well-being with rooms for mentoring and advising as well as financial and mental health counselling. A variety of social, meeting, and study spaces foster collaborative, interdisciplinary discourse and help students build a strong scholarly community.

Walker Hall building University of California Davis 

Walker Hall building University of California Davis 

The two-story north wing houses a graduate student lounge, counselling rooms, studies, multipurpose meeting spaces, and administrative offices. We shortened the three southern wings to allow for a new campus walkway and repurposed the three shop wings as a two-hundred-seat lecture hall and two large general assignment classrooms. These spaces are flexible active-learning environments that incorporate sophisticated media and digital technologies. In this way, the former machine shops now offer a new kind of toolbox that supports contemporary action-based learning. 

Walker Hall building University of California

Walker Hall building University of California

The history of the original building and the hot, dry climate of California’s Central Valley inform the new architecture. We retained and celebrated existing steel trusses, concrete columns, and finishes and inserted modern facades within the original shells. The interior opens to the campus through heavily shaded windows; from the outside people can see the activity during the day and the glow of the reflected sky after dark.

Walker Hall building University of California

Walker Hall building University of California

New exterior details—steel sunshades, cylindrical daylight collectors, a sculptural steel stair, and geometrically folded shade canopies—speak to the industrial history of the building. Walker Hall was seismically retrofitted with energy-efficient systems. New thermal insulation and high-efficiency building systems, combined with dedicated renewable energy provided by an on-campus solar farm will result in a zero net electricity building. The project received LEED Platinum certification. 

Walker Hall building University of California

Walker Hall illustrates how an unsafe, abandoned structure can be transformed into a sophisticated educational and administrative environment for a major university.

Walker Hall building transformation University of California Davis 

Walker Hall building transformation University of California Davis 

Walker Hall building transformation at University of California in Davis – Building Information

Design: ANX / Aaron Neubert Architects – https://www.lmsarch.com/
LMSa Team:
Bill Leddy
Ryan Jang
Jasen Bohlander
Alice Kao
Enrique Sanchez

Walker Hall building University of California Davis 

Project Team
Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects – Architecture
Forell Elsesser – Structural Engineering
BKF – Civil Engineering
Arup – MEP
Charles Salter – Security / Low Voltage / Acoustical
Shalleck Collaborative – AV
ALD (retired) – Lighting
OCB – Landscape
TBD – Cost Estimating
Stansen Specs – Specifications

Walker Hall building transformation University of California Davis 

Photography: Bruce Damonte

Walker Hall building transformation, University of California, Davis images / information received 280124

Location: Davis, California, USA

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