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The Chemistry Building stands apart from other buildings purely because of scale, its large and sprawling mass demands attention and instantly marks itself as important. The building is located immediately to the right of the Physical Sciences North building along the long grass stretch uniting the science buildings and was built in the 1960’s by the architects Albert C. Martin and Associates. It’s architecture mimics that of Broida Hall directly across the pathway and is a part of the “late campus standard” style of building, including hallmark hipped roofs, concrete block columns, a gridded facade, and exposed red-brown patterned concrete.

circa 1966 drawing of the Chemistry Building plan

Cloud, Sky, Building, Urban design

Front of Chemistry Hall

Building, Cloud, Sky, Plant

Sky, Cloud, Building, Window

Architects Albert C. Martin and Associates who designed this building and others on campus were part of a larger group of architects that contributed to the construction of UCSB as we know it today. Based in California, the firm is still active today, having been established in 1906! The first floor extension out of the building welcomes students inside and provides a “more human scale to the larger building”. At the time that the building was constructed it was a period of growth for the university, with Vernon Cheadle as the Chancellor from 1962-1977. In 1961 the School of Engineering and College of Letters and Sciences was established, marking the beginning of a period of academic expansion and increased enrollment. Foundational programs were founded during the 1960’s, including the Education Abroad Program and College of Creative Studies. At the decade’s closing there saw an increase in political activism regarding the Vietnam war and the rapid development of Isla Vista as a college town.

History Of UC Santa Barbara, University of California, Santa Barbara. Accessed March 11th 2021.

Campus by the Sea: 1960's, University of California, Santa Barbara. Accessed March 11th 2021.