The largest green roof in the world will shelter a 769,140-square-meter mixed-use complex under a 30-acre, fully accessible public park that restores the pre-development character of the Cupertino landscape.
For the Hills at Vallco in Cupertino, California, landscaping, public amenities, residential uses, circulation, and views are layered in an innovative manner to create a unique open space environment rich in variety of experiences.
The Hills at Vallco will include 58,000 square meters of commercial and civic areas. The design features family friendly entertainment, retail, sports and recreation, apartments for multi-generational living including 680 market rate, 80 below market rate, and 40 senior apartments, two million square feet of office space serving incubator, startups, emerging or established Silicon Valley companies, and supporting public, residential, and office amenity areas including a high school Innovation Center and transit center. The groundbreaking publicly accessible rooftop open space — 30-acres of landscaping floating with seismic isolation above the buildings — will comprise the largest green roof in the world and include nearly four miles of walking/jogging trails, vineyards, orchards, organic gardens, an amphitheater, children’s play areas, children’s soccer and cricket facilities, single level amenities pavilions, and a refuge for native fauna.
The project was driven by several overarching objectives, including clearing an existing mall, a bridged superblock; integrating the site by breaking it down into pedestrian and bike friendly blocks; creating a civic icon, and introducing a dynamic mixed-use environment for neighbors and visitors. The ground level blocks contain a variety of retail, restaurant, and entertainment amenities that face the street and surround multi-story integrated parking garages at centers of the blocks. An undulating roof above reduces the apparent massing of the development.
More than 80 percent of the total site area is covered with this publicly-accessible green roof—a landscaped parkland with sports, recreational, and cultural programs—a significant new urban amenity for the city. The roof meets the ground along the western edge adjacent to the single story homes, providing privacy from development to the neighbors while allowing access directly from the street to recreational paths that follow the roof as it slopes above the buildings. The paths then span above the streets and connect the green roof sections overhead.
The sustainability goal for the Hills at Vallco is LEED Platinum. The monumental scale of the green roof will improve resource efficiency and mitigate climate change through its use of both captured storm water and recycled water. It will reduce the urban heat island effect, improve public health, minimize water run-off, improve water and air quality, improve energy efficiency of the buildings, and promote bio-diversity. In the long run, The Hills at Vallco ambitiously targets a Net-Zero Water policy. Water conservation efforts will include the extension of the Santa Clara recycled water line to The Hills at Vallco.
Rafael Vinoly Architects, founded in 1983 and based in New York City, is an internationally renowned architectural firm with projects spanning six continents. The practice’s key trademark is its ability to reinvent institutional typologies and integrate the public realm into civic buildings. The practice’s atelier design intelligence coupled with the capabilities of a large, multi-disciplinary firm produces appropriate, creative responses to program requirements.
We consider design an integrated field in which programming, function, implementation, engineering, economic feasibility, and cultural impact are not independent concerns or disciplines but elements which should be equally evaluated and addressed.
The uniquely diverse work the firm has completed includes award-winning museums, performing arts centers, convention centers, athletic facilities, hotels, hospitals, laboratories, recreational venues, residential complexes, and commercial, industrial, and educational facilities.