College of Marin, Bill and Adele Jonas Center

Category: Learn
Novato, CA

This design-build project consists of a new single-story, 10,000-square-foot banquet hall plus the modernization of an adjacent building into a kitchen that will provide food service to the banquet space. The new, modern design features exposed, geometric roof framing and an expansive floor-to-ceiling glazing along the front face of the building that provides an open indoor/outdoor space with beautiful views of the surrounding nature.

The roof framing over the main seating area consists of carefully designed and exposed glue-laminated beams and a long-span, steel and glue-laminated beam bowstring truss that together form an aesthetically engaging visual experience. The lateral force-resisting system in the new building consists primarily of concrete and wood shear walls; however, cantilever concrete columns were used to maximize glazing at the front of the building and still allow for the large cantilevered roof overhang.

A unique aspect of the project is the re-use of the existing foundation piers for the new building. The new building is constructed on the footprint of a former, now demolished, two-story structure that is also adjacent to a small creek. The close proximity of the creek required the new building to be founded on deep foundation elements, but there were concerns that this would disturb the waterway. To address this, as well as reduce costs, the existing pier foundations were integrated into the design of the new building.

A new pedestrian bridge that spans over the creek, increases circulation between the new building and the campus. Additional accessibility features  in the design, include open walkways and gradual inclines that allow people to move comfortably throughout the space. The flexible functionality and open layout make this project a welcome addition to the campus.

Photos courtesy of LCA Architects

Size 10,800 sf
Completed 2020
Construction Cost $14.5M
Architect LCA Architects
Contractor Alten Construction
Owner College of Marin
Best Project - Best Higher Education/Research Project – Northern California

ENR (Engineering News-Record) 2021