First Church of Christ, Scientist
CITY OF BERKELEY LANDMARKdesignated in 1975
NATIONAL HISTORIC LANDMARK
Bernard R. Maybeck, Architect, 1910
Roof replacement, accessibility, and seismic improvements:
Architectural Resources Group and Degenkolb Engineers, 2007
Maybeck’s masterpiece is an Arts & Crafts fusion of Romanesque, early Christian, Gothic, and Japanese architectural influences. Constructed with common industrial materials—metal, concrete, and glass—the design expresses permanence and integrity in design and structure. Massive diagonally crossed wood trusses supported by four fluted concrete columns allow unobstructed views from the congregation to the Reader stands. Skylights, translucent hammered glass window walls, and indirect lighting create a connection between the interior space and the adjacent landscape. The Sunday School along the eastern side of the main church was added in 1929 by Maybeck in association with Henry Gutterson.
Berkeley Historical Plaque Project
First Church, postcard, photo Allen Stross.
Bernard Maybeck, Dimitri Shipounoff Collection, BAHA Archives.
First Church, side entry (2010), photo R. Kehlmann.
Doors, First Church (1980), photo David Close, BAHA Archives.
First Church (1912), Berkeley Public Library.
Bernard Maybeck, photo L.S.Slevin, Monterey County Free Libraries.