San Joaquin Villages

Architect: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects, Kevin Daly Architects, Kieran Timberlake

Owner: University of California, Santa Barbara

Location: Goleta, California

Category: Specialized Housing (category four)

Built around an existing residence hall, the new San Joaquin Villages introduce apartment-style housing for more than 1,000 students, along with staff and faculty residences, dining commons, a convenience store, and other amenities. SOM in collaboration with Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects and Kevin Daly Architects designed the various residences in order to infuses the project with architectural diversity.

The design team created a series of neighborhoods, each with a mix of housing types and amenities located within a 10-minute off-street bike ride from the center of campus. Each new facility is visually distinct, but all maintain a uniform sequence that balances efficiency, creativity and inclusivity. Plazas, recreational facilities, and courtyard gardens are added key components designed to enhance student life.

All the new residential construction has achieved LEED® Platinum certification for Homes. The site plan, which includes a new storm water management system to protect local wetlands, is also targeting LEED® Gold certification for Neighborhood Development.

Additional information

Architects: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (San Joaquin Towers), Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects (San Joaquin North Villages, Clusters 1 and 3), Kevin Daly Architects (San Joaquin North Villages, Clusters 2 and 4), Kieran Timberlake (Dining Commons)

Landscape Architect: Tom Leader Studio

Engineer – Civil: Stantec (post Design Development phase), Sherwood Engineers (up to Design Development phase)  

Engineer – Structural: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (Tower Villages), Nabih Yousef Associates (North Villages)

Engineer – MEP: Buro Happold

Engineer – Fire Life Safety: Jensen Hughes  

Consultant – Food Service: WEBB

Consultant – IT and Low Voltage: PlanNet (Tower Villages)

Consultant – Lighting Design: HLB (Tower Villages)

Consultant- Acoustics: Newson Brown

Consultant – LEED: Buro Happold  

Cost Estimating: CP O’Halloran

Signage and Wayfinding: Gerald Stamm

Design Contractor: Harper Construction


Simon Ha, AIA (Jury Chair), Steinberg Hart, Los Angeles, California

Kai-Uwe Bergmann, FAIA, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), New York, New York

Hans Butzer, AIA, Butzer Architects and Urbanism, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Mary Cerrone, AIA, Mary Cerrone Architects, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Image credits

San Joaquin Villages- University of California- Santa Barbara-06

Bruce Damonte

San Joaquin Villages- University of California- Santa Barbara-03

Bruce Damonte

San Joaquin Villages- University of California- Santa Barbara-04

Bruce Damonte

San Joaquin Villages- University of California- Santa Barbara-05

Bruce Damonte

San Joaquin Villages- University of California- Santa Barbara-07

Bruce Damonte