Early planning for physical layout of campus April 16, 2010Posted by ucisca in Early UCI Campus.
Tags: Campus Park, Campus planning, Clark Kerr, Daniel Aldrich, William Pereira
In the winter of 1962, UC President Clark Kerr invited UCI Architect William Pereira and UCI Chancellor Daniel Aldrich to meet him in Berkeley to discuss how best to use the newly selected Irvine campus site. At the meeting, Kerr recalled an influential book he had read as a graduate student, Johann Heinric von Thunen’s Der Isolierte Staat (1863), in which he envisioned the ideal city “as a series of concentric circles starting out with central city buildings and going out to industrial, housing and agricultural areas.” Kerr then drew a rough sketch of a proposed layout of the Irvine campus, a circle with the names of disciplines around it. The basic design was then elaborated during the physical planning, which incorporated a concentric and radial scheme. The Central Campus was designed to consist of six quadrangles, each representing an academic unit, which radiated out of the ring. The ring unified the school both functionally and artistically. Distances between each quad were minimized and provided movement for pedestrians and bicycles. At the center of the ring is the 29-acre Daniel Aldrich Park, originally named Campus Park, which is the metaphorical heart of the campus. Designed as an informal gathering place, it was based on the central parks of cities and universities throughout the world.