Extension of Research Institute in La Jolla, California
In its layout and use of materials, this extension, consisting of two wings linked by a courtyard and an underground tract, complements the existing laboratory complex built by Louis Kahn in the early 1960s. For the original buildings, the founder of the institute, the late Jonas Salk, wished for surfaces that would look like “liquid stone”. Great efforts were made, therefore, to achieve a special concrete surface quality for the extension. The consistent, polished, stone-like surface sheen was obtained with specially designed polyethylene-lined plywood formwork. The pattern of fine, relief-like lines was obtained by chamfering the edges of the formwork. In contrast to this, the working joints between floors are in the form of indented grooves.