The Vision of Renzo Piano

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By Nikki Janda / Published by Nikki Janda
As we look forward to the new rising stars of architects, it is equally important to acknowledge existing work of seasoned architects who have, and continue to pave the way. Renzo Piano, award winning architect and founder of Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPW) based in Paris and Genoa, leaves his firm's imprint of visionary enlightenment through architectural feats, one of which is the California Academy of Sciences.

In 2000 RPW began work on the 8 year project of the California Academy of Sciences' (CalAcademy) space located in San Francisco.  The firm's architectural goals for the project were parallel with CalAcademy's in combining a scientific research center with a fully interactive science museum, making it the first of its kind.  

The vision of Renzo Piano for this space was for visitors to feel the eco-friendly planning and design of the space, surrounded by and filled with oxygen and natural life. 

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The Osher Rain Forest is a 4-story enclosed dome, which is the largest rain forest exhibit enclosure in the world.  This LEED Certified building boasts a green roof with 2.5 acres of natural, living green life.  A protruding circular ceiling welcomes natural light and air to flow throughout the building.  

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Stairs leading down into Steinhart Aquarium, revealing hints of natural light and exposed concrete into the cool water-filled space.

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Children look in awe into the endless depth of the Philippine coral reef tank, one of the most diverse aquatic coral reef exhibits in the world.

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