The Tribute Building proposal honors the relationship between Michael Heller Sr. and Wayne Thiebaud. In an invitational competition, Dreyfuss & Blackford proposed a forward-thinking solution, not unlike the innovative SMUD Headquarters building. Not coincidentally, Mike Heller Sr. and Wayne Thiebaud collaborated with Dreyfuss & Blackford on the landmark SMUD building.
Just as Thiebaud’s mural was integral to the SMUD headquarters building, this project creates a mural that is large in scale and subtle in contrast. Screen-printed images on perforated metal panels would cover the east elevation, floating Thiebaud’s art above the street.
To address typical sequencing infill site issues, the proposal sought to use lift-slab construction. A method where concrete slabs are cast on the ground, one on top of the other, and then lifted onto columns using hydraulic jacks. Though somewhat unconventional, this technique can reduce construction costs, shorten schedules and produce very light, thin floor plates.
Respecting the code-required separation distance, windows were ’punched’ into the side of the structure to create clerestory light over the interior corridor. Resulting overhangs provide the shading needed for passive daylighting.
With concepts that go beyond the conventional, the Tribute Building proposal reflects cutting-edge innovation of today, just as the SMUD headquarters did in 1959.