UCB C.I.T.R.I.S. Café

location:Berkeley, CA
owner:University of California, Berkeley
completion:August 2009

Kava Massih Architects was approached by U.C. Berkeley to design the café seating areas and kitchen within the new C.I.T.R.I.S. Science Building. The design addresses the University’s desire to create a dynamic social hub with functional café service, including CAL dining and Peets Coffee venues. The seating areas are separated into three zones, each with distinctive colors and textures to evoke the natural world, from bright daylight atmosphere to subterranean lounge. A banquette and bar formed from massive steel plate, angles through the space, circulating diners from multiple entries to the food service counters and seating areas. In the open seating zones, wood slats in natural finish and metallic silver are arranged in a grid to screen building systems above, while providing a sense of openness and flow. The lounge – a student favorite – is a contemplative and contemporary space, characterized by its dramatically angled ceiling, deep colors, modern furnishings, and exposed wood and concrete.