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The State of California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) District 3 Headquarters is located in downtown Marysville, California - 40 miles north of Sacramento. The commission for the 230,000 SF design-build project, garnered in a competition by a partnership between Turner Construction and AC Martin, features loft-like open offices with high ceilings and natural lighting. The facility houses 758 Caltrans employees and includes a 200-seat auditorium, public service counters, teleconferencing facilities, a childcare center, and a European-style cafeteria with outdoor tables and canvas awnings - unusual for a state building.
The genesis of the design stems from basic ideas articulated by Caltrans and the Marysville community. Caltrans desired a healthy building filled with light and air while simultaneously cultivating a collaborative environment within and between all departments. Informed by these guidelines the building is aligned to take advantage of its east-west long axis ensuring that every work space is within 37 feet of natural light. Additionally, a four-story interior “canyon” is bathed in controlled natural light from south facing clerestory windows. This grand space provides increased air circulation and allows for sight lines between all floors of the building and between interior and exterior spaces.