Redesigning Berkeley Bart Station
This speculative project reimagines street-level access to the Berkeley Bart Station, an important transportation hub. While taking a Landscape Architecture class at UC Berkeley, we were given a design brief to redesign the old rotunda entrance that had remained there since the station was built in the 1960's. The hulking structure was dark and foreboding, and I chose to bring light and nature into the busy, urban infrastructure. The concept takes inspiration from two important eras in Berkeley's past: its former life as productive farmland and its more recent history of political activism and hippie idealism.
The central plaza features a glass greenhouse over the main entrance. A vertical terrarium stands between the escalators and extends from the roof to the station below. The inner skeleton is based on a map of the neighborhood from 1878, when it was predominantly agricultural farm land. The interior scaffolding doubles as the watering infrastructure for a hydroponic system, growing soil-free plants that allow for maximum light filtration into the station below.
The entire programme includes added greenspace and a food shed, improving the quality of life for commuters, students, and residents in the area. Central Street runs between the UC campus and the Bart station, acting as a major passageway. It would be closed off to car traffic, allowing bike lanes and pedestrian paths to meander through a community garden. Managed by volunteers and students, the produce grown would be available free of charge to anyone experiencing food insecurity.