Broad Art Museum

The Broad is a new art museum that houses post-war and contemporary art assembled by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad. Located in downtown Los Angeles, the museum opened to the public in 2015. It is home to nearly 2,000 works divided between two floors of gallery space. It is also the headquarters of The Broad Art Foundation’s worldwide lending library.

Diller Scofidio + Renfro worked in close collaboration with Arup on the design of The Broad, helping showcase a “veil-and-vault” concept. This concept removes the normal museum archive and storage area as a place where items go to never be seen again, and instead transforms it into a heavy opaque mass that is always in view, hovering midway in the building. The vault is surrounded by the “veil,” an airy, honeycomb-like structure that spans across the gallery and provides filtered natural daylight.

The top floor gallery is illuminated by expansive north-facing skylight clerestories and a fully-shaded glazed east wall. Arup assisted with the Building Information Modelling (BIM) of the building services in the roof and lobby ceilings. This allowed for seamless integration of sprinklers, sensors, shading devices, conduit, and electric lighting into the architectural aesthetic.

Designers also recommended energy savings strategies. These included utilising the architectural “veil” as an external shading device, daylight harvesting, occupancy-based control of lighting, variable frequency drives on large HVAC motors, demand control ventilation, carbon monoxide control of garage fans, and the use of low-energy ultrasonic humidifiers. The building’s energy use, projected to be lower than the current California Energy Code requirements by at least 20%, assisted in the goal of achieving a LEED Gold rating.

In total, Arup provided mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineering, along with commissioning, lighting design, acoustic consulting, fire/life safety consulting, and earlier phase audio visual and IT/communications consulting.

The museum was named Daylight Project of the Year at the 2016 Lighting Design Awards. Engineering News-Record also awarded it a Northern California Best Project award in the Cultural/Worship category and named it Southern California’s 2016 Project of Year.

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