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Grad Labs

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  Landscape Architecture

Natural landscapes are evolving. The importance of replicating this natural progression at GradLabs was readily apparent. Natural ecosystems are non-static – they start with first-generation herbaceous plants after a fire or other disturbances (this case, new construction). These plants quickly cover the ground, stabilizing the soil, providing nitrogen and fertility for the second-generation plants. The second-generation takes longer but it helps to further stabilize the soil with deeper roots. Third-generation plants slowly move in and are well-established woody plants that provide perfect fauna habitat and food. They also help to further the fertility of the soil and surrounding ecosystem.

Over many years, third-generation plants become dense and the soil less rich with minerals and nutrients, as much of what is available is now stored in the plant material. In the natural ecosystem, fires eventually come through an area and burn plant material, and the cycle starts over. The design was to replicate this natural progression of the surrounding ecosystem – by incorporating different plant materials that mimic this natural progression. Building users and guests can experience this natural progression occurring over the life cycles of the building and in the meantime, natural habitat for local flora and fauna are created.

9880 Campus Point Drive, San Diego, CA

Project Owner/Developer:
Alexandria Real Estate

Contact Name/Email:
Brett Gosset / Dan Ryan, bgossett@are.com

Project Architect/Designer:
McCullough Landscape Architecture

nomination photo nomination photo


  1. Belal Siddiqui

    I like the waves it mimics the landscape

  2. Paul

    Nicely done!

  3. liz novi

    I really love the flow of the and levels on the building.

  4. Nikki Holloway

    I appreciate that the design intends to replicate the natural progression of the surrounding ecosystem – great at showing respect and connection to the context and native landscape.

  5. Sydney

    Nice work!

  6. Valerie

    Very cool flow to this. Love the natural ecosystem being incorporated

  7. Li Quan



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