Snøhetta to design 270,000 sq ft extension for University of California San Francisco

Norwegian architect Snøhetta has been chosen to design the Parnassus Research and Academic Building (PRAB) for the University of California San Francisco (UCSF).

Snøhetta will lead the project’s conceptual design, and US firm Hammel, Green and Abrahamson (HGA) will act as executive architect and architect of record, in charge of programming, planning, project management and the specialist design of research and laboratory areas.

The 270,000 sq ft PRAB development includes wet labs, computational labs, classrooms and a nursing school surrounded by open fields. The bulk of the facility will be dedicated to research, with 12,000 sq ft earmarked for educational spaces.

Work on UCSF includes the PRAB extension in the campus’ west, as well as renovation and expansion works and public spaces for the Cole Valley and Inner Sunset neighbourhoods.

Michelle Delk, a partner in Snøhetta, said: "Our approach centers on cultural exchange and the public realm. The project will not only serve clinicians and researchers at UCSF, but will include new vistas, promenades and public gathering areas that will take advantage of San Francisco’s climate and natural context to bring added beauty to the site and campus."

Brian Newman, UCSF Health’s vice president, said: "The HGA and Snøhetta team embody traits that are not just important for a successful design partnership, but also represent our aspirations for the PRAB project, including collaboration, creativity, innovation and excellence.

"The two firms see the project site and its topographical challenges as opportunities to open up the interior of the campus and facilitate movement from the PRAB to other buildings."

The PRAB is due to open in 2026.

Image courtesy of Snøhetta

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