Who doesn't like an engineered guardrail?

San Diego Natural History Museum

Guardrail & Truss Design and Development Process...

The new design of the Natural History Museum Special Collections Gallery includes the addition of two mezzanines each requiring a new structural truss to support them.  With this in mind Place saw the opportunity to combine function and form by designing an artistically engineered guardrail.  This unique guardrail would provide not only the needed strength to support the new mezzanines but also add an organic element to the space.

railing study

IDEA - Increasing library & gallery square footage was accomplished with the addition of two mezzanines.  The challenge was to create a long-span structural beam with a natural design theme that could also be easily built in the existing space.  The result was a unique structural guardrail design.


EVOLUTION - Through collaboration of architecture and engineering, the design of the guardrail/truss evolved within a parametric digital modeling program. 


TEST - The design was digitally tested by engineers at ARUP to generate a structural guardrail/truss.  


OUTCOME - The creation of a structural member strong enough to support the new mezzanines and unique enough to enhance the overall experience for visitors of the new Special Collections Gallery in the Natural History Museum.