Berkeley Landmarks designated in 2013
Joseph Esherick sketch, 5 Nov. 1958 (University of California College of Environmental Design Archive, Esherick Collection)
Entrance, Harold E. Jones Child Study Center (photo: Jane Perry)
Harold E. Jones Child Study Center
Joseph Esherick (1958–1960)
2425 Atherton Street at Haste Street
Designated: 6 June 2013
The Harold E. Jones Child Study Center is affiliated with the Institute for Human Development, an Organized Research Unit of the University of California at Berkeley. It houses two preschool classrooms with extensive outdoor laboratories and currently provides full-day child care services to university families through the campus Early Childhood Education Program, as well as facilities for researchers, teachers, and students of child development.
Courtyard (photo: Jane Perry)
Rear yard (photo: Jane Perry)
The building, with its play yards, was designed by Joseph Esherick, FAIA, a distinguished Bay Area architect, recipient of the prestigious AIA Gold Medal, and professor in the U.C. School of Architecture. It opened in 1960, replacing an earlier nursery school housed in the Institute of Child Welfare on Bancroft Way. Its presence in this South of Campus residential neighborhood is reflective of larger changes in the urban fabric.
The Child Study Center complex expresses the quintessence of mid-20th century Bay Area modernism (often referred to as the Second Bay Tradition), emphasizing building and living in harmony with nature. Residential in character, it features a trellis in the entry-way, open courtyards with trees, and large windows. The architecture draws on traditions of “fresh-air schools” in the blending of indoor and outdoor spaces.
The landmark application and related documents are available online.
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