WorkAC, SO - IL, and Henning Larsen Architects To Compete For UC Davis Art Museum

Viborg Town Hall, by Henning Larsen Architects, one of 4 architectural firms competing to design UC Davis' next Art Museum. © Thorbjoern Hansen Kontraframe

The University of California Davis (UCD) has selected three pairings of architects and contractors to compete to design a $30-million art museum, expected to be completed in 2016. The university has decided against a traditional competition in favor of a design-build competition, requesting that each of the prospective architects - WorkAC, SO-IL (working with Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, of Apple store fame), and Henning Larsen Architects - work with specific contractors in order to develop holistically conceived museum schemes. More information after the break.

As ArtInfo explains: “For those who are unfamiliar with the term, the design-build system predetermines a number of groups working on a design proposal, most notably both the architects and the contractors, as opposed to separately appointing architects for the design and, at a later time, hiring contractors for the execution. This latter method is popularly conceived to be the status quo, with its neat affirmation of architecture as a lofty, high-art form, notably distinguished from the science-bound pragmatism of construction and engineering. While this division of labor is far from eliminated in a design-build delivery, the equal weighting of contractors and architects at the start of the design process allows for more continuous collaboration between the two groups.” UCD believes this to be the first design-build competition for an art museum in the US.

Museum director Rachel Teagle, explained in a Press Release that the motivation behind the design-build competition came from a “spirit of experimentation”: “UC Davis’ artist faculty and alumni are renowned for the spirit of experimentation that defines their art, be it work made in ceramics, photography or conceptual art. We celebrate that spirit by launching the first design-build competition for an art museum in the United States. This proven project-development model is new to the world of art museums where aesthetic concerns predominate. It introduces to the design process a transparency and openness that is deeply aligned with UC Davis’ mission.”

The teams competing to build the museum are:

- Contractor: Kitchell; design architect: WORKac; executive architect: Westlake Reed Leskosky - Contractor: Oliver and Co.; design architect: Henning Larsen Architects; executive architect: Gould Evans - Contractor: Whiting-Turner; design architect: SO – IL; executive architect: Bohlin Cywinski Jackson

Courtesy of, UC Davis, and BizJournals

About this author
Cite: Alison Furuto. "WorkAC, SO - IL, and Henning Larsen Architects To Compete For UC Davis Art Museum" 06 Dec 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

You've started following your first account!

Did you know?

You'll now receive updates based on what you follow! Personalize your stream and start following your favorite authors, offices and users.