FALL 2017
GCI News
Project Updates
Salk Institute Restoration Celebration

On June 27, 2017, the GCI and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies celebrated the completion of the conservation project for the site’s teak window wall assemblies by holding an evening reception in the Salk’s iconic plaza overlooking the Pacific Ocean in La Jolla, California.

A view of the Salk Institute

The institute, designed by architect Louis I. Kahn for Jonas Salk, developer of the polio vaccine, was completed in 1965 and is considered a masterpiece of modern architecture. In 2013 the GCI and the Salk partnered to address the aging of and long-term care for the 203 deteriorating window assemblies set within the concrete walls. After four years of research, on-site investigations, laboratory analysis, trial mock-ups to test conservation treatments, design development by Salk architects Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc., and a yearlong construction project, work is now complete, with two-thirds of the original Southeast Asian teak conserved and the severely damaged portions replaced in kind. A project report on the first phase of work is now available.

The June event also celebrated the completion of a conservation management plan to guide long-term care of the entire site, funded in part by the Getty Foundation’s Keeping It Modern grant program for modern architectural heritage. The Salk Institute announced the launch of an endowment to fund future conservation at the site, with a lead gift from Dr. Salk’s son, Jonathan Salk, and his wife, Elizabeth Shepherd.