|Set on four city blocks by Lake Merritt in downtown Oakland, California, the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) was designed by Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates and is an icon of mid-century modernism. It first opened its doors in 1969. Roche’s design united under one roof Oakland’s collections of art, history, and natural sciences. The building became a milestone in museum design. Its interrelated interior spaces, tucked under landscaped terraces and opening onto lush gardens, transcended the boundaries that had separated the collections.
After 30 years of operation, OMCA joined forces with Mark Cavagnero Associates of San Francisco to develop a master plan to address the growing needs of the museum while honoring the original architecture and landscape vision of Roche and Kiley. In 2009, the museum closed for construction and in May 2010 the “museum for the people” reopened to the public offering a fresh new visitor experience.