PWP Landscape Architecture

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Library Walk, University of California


San Diego, California

Completion Date



Regents of the University of California



Library Walk, located at the University of California, San Diego Campus, is a pedestrian spine that runs through the heart of the student-services buildings and terminates at Geisel Library. The walk provides much needed structure as well as a key pedestrian link to a loosely planned and sprawling campus. The client wanted the walk to be multi-functional, a location for campus gatherings and fairs throughout the year.

To achieve these goals, PWP created a 30-foot-wide pedestrian way lined by a densely reforested eucalyptus grove on one side and buildings on the other. The paving is made of simple and durable materials—alternating stripes of dark-gray and light-gray concrete unit pavers. 

Precast concrete plinths run the length of the walk and accent the linear variations. During the day, students use these elements for sitting, reading, and lying in the sun, while at night they function as lights, making the light-gray stripes float and the dark-gray stripes recede. During campus fairs and gatherings, the pre-cast elements are used as different stations or tables allowing quick and easy transformation of the space.