The J. David Gladstone Institutes, celebrating its 25th anniversary of scientific collaboration and achievement, will dedicate its new six-story biomedical research building in Mission Bay today.
The Gladstone Institutes has a long and rich record of basic research achievements in such areas as cardiovascular disease, immunology, virology and neurodegenerative disorders. The new building, adjacent to the University of California, San Francisco Mission Bay campus, provides approximately 200,000 square feet of space for laboratories and offices, and a 150-seat auditorium. It houses the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease, the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology, and the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease.
While independent, Gladstone is formally affiliated with UCSF. Gladstone investigators hold UCSF appointments and participate in many UCSF activities, including the teaching and training of postdoctoral fellows and graduate students. The move to Mission Bay, completed in early November, will support synergies among Gladstone researchers and their UCSF colleagues.
The new structure is designed to promote interaction. Each Gladstone institute has its own floor with approximately 100 workstations, or bench spaces, stretching in rows from one end of the building to the other. Laboratory floors are arranged in three long stripes: bench spaces on one side, administrative offices and cubes on the other, and specialized facilities down the center. Research and office areas are open and can be easily reconfigured to suit the changing needs of scientists and support staff.
A highlight of the building’s lobby and reception area is a museum-quality trio of large-format drawings by renowned California artist Wayne Thiebaud. Titled “City Views,” it is a 2004 mixed media-on-canvas triptych featuring a Potrero Hill cityscape. Thiebaud is one of the most prominent Bay Area painters of the latter part of the 20th century.
“This striking building marks a true milestone in Gladstone’s history,” says Gladstone President Robert Mahley, MD, PhD. “With its enhanced technologies and with the many new opportunities that it provides for collaboration, it ensures that the San Francisco Bay Area will continue to be an international hub of research into such diseases as cardiovascular disease, HIV/AIDS and Alzheimer’s disease.”
Participating in a morning dedication ceremony will be UCSF Chancellor J. Michael Bishop and former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown. In lieu of a ribbon-cutting ceremony, Gladstone’s three trustees will unveil a bust of founder J. David Gladstone, a former real estate developer whose 1971 will created an endowment for medical research.
The day-long celebration concludes with a banquet featuring the inauguration of the first-ever Gladstone Trustee Awards. Honored recipients will be former UCSF Chancellors Julius Krevans and Joseph Martin, both of whom played crucial roles in the growth of the Gladstone Institutes through the years, and former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, who successfully championed Gladstone’s move to Mission Bay while he was in office.
The $74 million Gladstone building project features several “firsts” in San Francisco’s annals of large-scale building projects. The structure is the first privately financed lifesciences research facility to be approved by the city’s building department, and it’s the first major steel-frame building to use an unbonded brace-frame system. The diagonal braces act like automobile shock absorbers during a quake and absorb most of the lateral forces of a temblor. It is also the first major nonresidential enterprise beyond the UCSF campus to move into Mission Bay.
For years, Gladstone’s approximately 325 staff members have been scattered in several buildings at San Francisco General Hospital. In the late 1990s, Gladstone trustees purchased land at Mission Bay to build new laboratories. Design began in the spring of 2002, construction started in March of last year and was completed this September, and move-in was completed by early November.