*Document Withdrawn Per Lead*
The new Annex would serve the same purpose as the existing Annex, providing office space, hearing rooms, conference rooms, and supporting facilities for the Legislature and executive branch. Approximately 1,700 personnel (i.e., combined elected officials, their staff, and other employees in the Capitol) work in the Annex. The number of employees would not change as a result of development of the new Annex, although some employees currently located in the Legislative Office Building may move to the Annex, and vice versa. Like the existing Annex, the new Annex would be physically connected to the Historic Capitol. The new Annex would provide approximately 525,000 gross square feet of space, compared to the 325,000 square feet in the existing Annex. The new Annex would support more and larger hearing rooms and conference rooms, more consistently sized office spaces, and more efficiently designed facilities.
The footprint of the new Annex building is proposed as a Double-T configuration and would extend east to the 12th Street walkway in Capitol Park. The building would be formed with two north-south oriented rectangles; the shorter rectangle closer to and shorter than the length of the north/south extent of the Historic Capitol, and the footprint of the second longer rectangle extending north/south beyond the first rectangle. The Double-T building height would be no taller than the parapet of the historic capitol and/or the base of the existing Capitol dome. The Double-T height would be no more than 125 feet, which is lower than the current colonnade level and well below the base of the dome. This height limitation, along with the overall massing of the new Annex is intended to reinforce its subservience to the Historic Capitol building. The floors within the Annex would be designed to align with the floors in the Historic Capitol, with new Annex floors connecting to the corresponding floor in the Historic Capitol (e.g., the 2nd floor of the Annex connects to the 2nd floor of the Historic Capitol, the 3rd Floor of the Annex connects to the 3rd Floor of the Historic Capitol, etc.). This is not the current condition, where, for example, the current 3rd floor of the Annex connects to the 2nd floor of the Historic Capitol.
The exterior of the Double-T Annex would be a glass “pleated wall” design. The selection of a glass exterior serves multiple purposes; for example, the glass exterior maximizes the availability of natural light, improving work conditions for building occupants and minimizing the need for artificial light. Reflecting regulatory standards for constructing new buildings adjacent to historic buildings, the New Annex would be compatible with, but not identical to the Historic West Wing. The New Annex will be compatible with the Historic West Wing through inclusion of materials with corresponding heights, widths, form (e.g., columns), and colors to the Historic West Wing. A portion of the glass would be coated with a white frit pattern (ceramic coating on the glass) which would serve to control heat gain and glare, limit reflectivity of the glass, and give the facade a white color, to more closely integrate the New Annex with the Historic West Wing.
Demolition of the existing Annex would include removal of the existing underground parking. Replacement parking, rather than in the Annex basement, is proposed under the 12th Street walkway to reduce impacts to trees and landscaping in Capitol Park. The construction disturbance area and footprint of the garage has been designed to avoid several important trees in Capitol Park. The new underground parking would accommodate approximately 150 vehicles and would include electric vehicle charging stations in numbers that meet or exceed minimum building code standards. As with the current Annex basement parking, the 12th Street alignment for the underground parking would have entries/exits with security checkpoints on both L Street and N Street. The State is actively coordinating with the City of Sacramento transportation planning staff on the entries/exits on L and N Streets.
The new visitor/welcome center would be approximately 30,000 square feet of interior space and would be located between 10th Street and the west steps of the Capitol. The new visitor/welcome center would be substantially below grade (i.e., mostly below exiting ground level) in order to minimize visual impact, particularly from the Capitol Mall corridor view facing east. The entrance to the visitor welcome center would face 10th Street and would consist of a gently sloped and universally accessible (ADA compliant) walkway/ramp leading down to entrance doorways below ground level. The lower plaza would have stairs, as well as stepped seating areas incorporated into the landscape. At the east end of the central walkway/ramp would be doors leading to the below grade enclosed portion of the visitor/welcome center. At this location visitors would move through a security checkpoint before moving further into the visitor/welcome center. The east end of the visitor/welcome center would connect to the basement of the Historic Capitol allowing visitors to move directly from the visitor/welcome center into the Historic Capitol building.
Although trees within the visitor/welcome center footprint would need to be removed during construction, the mature Deodar Cedars in the area would be protected and retained.
The interior of the visitor/welcome center would include educational resources supporting civic engagement and improved understanding of California and its government. Conference rooms, classroom teaching spaces, restrooms, storage space, and space for security personnel would also be included in the visitor/welcome center.
The ground above the visitor/welcome center would be landscaped as an upper plaza, with the surface elevation even with the bottom of the first set of remaining original (i.e., west portico) steps to the Historic Capitol west entrance. The upper plaza would include a large glass skylight providing light to the underground portion of the visitor/welcome center and allowing individuals in the visitor/welcome center to have a view of the Historic Capitol dome as they move through the center. The skylight glass on the upper plaza would extend above ground level, as well as a wall suitable for use as seating that may surround the skylight. A safety railing would be located on the west edge of the upper plaza.
The lower plaza and associated landscape modifications, the below grade visitor/welcome center, and the upper plaza and associated landscape modifications, would be designed to not visually detract from the Historic Capitol, and would maintain the west façade of the Historic Capitol as a focal point of Capitol Mall. The top of the visitor center roof (ground-level) would be even with, or just below, the base of the west portico steps to allow visibility of the Historic Capitol. The only visitor/welcome center elements that would extend above the base of the west portico steps would be the safety railing along the west edge of the upper plaza, elements of the skylight that extend above the ground surface, and fencing around emergency exits. Only the safety railing and parts of the skylight above ground level would obstruct views of the portico, and only the steps and small portion of the portico just above the base of the steps would be affected.