Del Mar Civic Center

Location: Del Mar, CA
Architect: Miller Hull
Products: EM2 Series Actuators and PSP Power Supply Panels
Glazing Co: Centex Glazing

About the Project
Miller Hull designed the campus as a community-building space. The town hall and large outdoor plazas are essential to that mission: They’re scaled variously to accommodate a wide range of events, from city council meetings and fundraising dinners to musical performances and dances. All in all, 40% of the site remains open space. An accordion-like glass wall can retract to open the town hall directly onto the breezeway heading into the city hall, forming a massive indoor-outdoor gathering space.

Miller Hull also exposed the town hall’s glue-laminated beams and the city hall’s open-web wood joists, making them a focal point. “They were inspired by the needles and branches of the region’s Torrey pine tree,” says Jobes, “and [they] give the space a warm, dynamic character.”

Not least, sustainability was built-in. A photovoltaic array and battery system is projected to produce 50% of the building’s annual power load, which includes electric vehicle charging stations. When outside conditions are amenable, the town hall cupola’s clerestory windows open automatically via electronic actuators (EM2 Series Actuators) on the window sills. This natural ventilation system even notifies employees—who control lower windows manually—by email. “By giving staff a sense of control, the perceived comfort level is improved,” Jobes says. “We call this learning to ‘sail the building.’”