The civic center includes a 3,000-square-foot town hall where the city council and city committees will meet; a 9,000-square-foot city hall housing such departments as planning, administrative services, finance, code enforcement and the city manager’s office; and a 13,000-square-foot plaza that host events and serves as a space where the public can enjoy panoramic ocean views.
The landscape architect saw the plaza as an opportunity to enhance city hall as a destination due to its prominent hillside location overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Surrounded by private residential, this project invites citizens and visitors to also enjoy the extraordinary views. Various seating and gatherings areas allow the public to enjoy the city’s coastal assets. Underground parking, multiple access points, signage, and circulation through each outdoor public area was carefully planned.
Tucked away out of sight beneath the plaza is an underground parking structure, which, together with a rear surface lot, offers 140 parking spaces that can be used by city hall during the day and by the public at night and on weekends. Two levels of underground parking create the podium for the city hall building and two exterior landscape courts. This condition did not hinder the ability to plant large trees and construct seat walls for public enjoyment.
This project has served as a model for many other municipalities in the region whose city leaders are aiming to provide daily civic services in one facility along with civic amenities and revenue generating opportunities for businesses. From day one, the design team collaborated with the people of Del Mar to ensure that the architecture and site design was compatible with and characteristic of the neighborhood, was structurally efficient, and offered public access, amenities, and views. Overall, the new Del Mar Civic Center successfully expresses the culture and physical attributes of Del Mar, making it a true community asset.