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The Constellation of San Jose > Urban Confluence - Silicon Valley > San Jose, U.S.A > 2020

Proposal for the Urban Confluence Competition project in Silicon Valley. Recommended by the Urban Confluence Silicon Valley Community Competition Panel (CCP) to the Jury for consideration, along with 46 other submissions after the CCP reviewed and rated all 963 qualified submissions.

The project proposes a landmark with a unique spatial configuration, a constellation, generated from the confluence of lighting towers over the site. Based on a rigorous and free masterplan distribution, its duality, potentiate the development of a great variety of spaces and supports a strong diversity of programs. It is a shared environment to be enjoyed for everyone at any time.


The masterplan works programmatically like a community composed by 229 towers, 143 in the west area near the SAP and 86 in the east area, that conform a unique public space and atmosphere. Like the stars of a constellation, every lighting tower is unique. Their height, size and programming, depends on their specific location and its relationship with the surroundings. Some of the towers are observatories accessible through elevators or stairs, allowing us to gaze freely at the San Jose surrounding cityscape privileged open places. Others are intimate meeting spaces in which to enjoy indoor activities. These adaptable places can be shops, coffee or cocktail bars, small restaurants, or art studios.


In order to evoke the spirit of the 1881 original tower the lighting plan takes shape as the form of rings of light. In the afternoon and at night, luminous rings appear on top of the towers, floating over the site and guiding the travelers of the State Route 87 and Interstate 280. The Lighting Project incorporates changing patterns customized according to city events and seasons recognizable at urban scale. In order to protect the sensitive natural habitat of the riparian corridor, the system is provided with time-clock controls that can restrict the hours of operation. To support zero emission lighting, reduce consumption and increase efficiency and sustainability, the energy for the system is supported by curved solar PV arrays installed at the top of every tower following the towers top shape. Considering the natural advantages of San Jose geographical location, we can foresee the catalytic potential of the project to be the South Bay Urban emblematic Center and a new cultural symbol of San Jose. 

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