Four-storey building made of recycled materials
A $28 million state-of-the-art office building, on the site of a former parking lot next to UC Berkeley, will house at least 10 environmental nonprofit groups. The building will be made of 53 percent recycled material and will have four levels. The Brower Center also includes a 180-seat theater, art galleries, meeting rooms, a restaurant and other public spaces. The organizers’ hope is to create a place where environmentally minded people can meet, brainstorm and help solve some of the world’s most challenging ecological dilemmas.
The building officially opens May 8. The center was designed by San Francisco architect Dan Solomon. The Center requires no artificial light during the day, and uses rainwater collected from the roof to irrigate the patio garden. Most of the wood is either sustainably grown or reclaimed, and much of the concrete and carpets are recycled. It’s also filled with artwork. One wall is coated with four different-colored local soils mixed into the plaster, creating a textured mosaic of tans, browns and ambers. An irrigation tool on the patio is made from used artillery shells, and the bathroom counters are a colorful panoply of recycled glass. A wooden conference table is shaped like a tree.