Currently, the Multicultural Institute (MI) operates out of several facilities to provide services to their community.  They sought to bring all branches of their organization under one roof in their West Berkeley headquarters.    To do so, extensive renovation to the existing craftsman-style house and structural work will be required.

Because MI operates more programs than their existing 3,400 sf facility could hold, additional space will be added in the front and side, maximizing the buildable area on the site.  The building will receive a new façade and entry garden that will be more in keeping with its new community face.

Usable outdoor space is vital for the function of the Multicultural Institute, and will be maintained to the greatest extent possible.  The existing side and rear gardens will be maintained as overflow space for the Center’s community events.  The front yard will be renovated to provide additional security and privacy.  The new first floor classroom will use the new front garden as additional instructional space.

The Multicultural Institute (MI)







Design Team:



Private commission

Headquarters for a local non-profit

Multicultural Institute

Berkeley, CA

In construction


Irving Gonzales, Jennifer Wichtowski


Kam Yan and Associates, Interface Engineering