2011 M. Arch Studio 4. Instructor: Dan Wood
The Social Complex reimagines Berkeley’s school of architecture as a social organism that will emphasize new ways to think about design and social engagement. Its mission is to teach students to think critically about their environment through direct engagement and to create a productive bond between school, public, and local activist groups. The school acts as a physical link between downtown Berkeley and the university campus. Layers of educational and public programs interlock and support one another in this truly integrated complex. Public spaces for learning, communication, entertainment, and demonstration continue the city street, which acts as a connective promenade for the Social Complex. The public is invited to design workshops, asked to participate in community projects and inspired by visionary student exhibitions. The school becomes a hub for social thought and the creative means to make public space for progressive change in face of an increasingly privatized urban realm.