Three California Buildings Honored for Energy Efficiency ‘By Design’

Three California Buildings Honored for Energy Efficiency ‘By Design’

Three building projects have received top honors in the 2004 Savings By Design Energy Efficiency Integration Awards Competition.

Savings By Design is a program to encourage high-performance nonresidential building design and construction. The awards were announced the competition's co-sponsors: The American Institute of Architects, California Council, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, San Diego Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison Company, and Southern California Gas Company.

"This year's winning projects truly advance the edge of the energy-efficient design practice," commented Grant Duhon, Savings By Design Senior Program Manager at Pacific Gas and Electric. "They not only provide beautiful building forms and conserve energy resources, but also serve as centers that inspire, educate, and celebrate the communities that provide their context."

Cesar E. Chavez Education Center, Oakland, Calif.

The new Cesar E. Chavez Education Center embraces its surrounding diverse urban community by creating a true neighborhood center through educational and childcare programs, and providing much-needed recreational and joint/dedicated community use places.

The design of the school maximizes natural daylighting and features maximum natural ventilation, passive heating and cooling, and a well-integrated, efficient lighting and control system.

The jurors were impressed by the efforts made to bring the best of energy-efficient, sustainable design to a tough, constrained urban site. They particularly noted the effort to align the classrooms on a north/south axis for maximum use of daylighting despite the site's orientation -- and the delightful building forms that resulted from this effort. "This really is an oasis," the jurors exclaimed. "It makes a compelling argument for dealing with cultures and context. If schools should be centers of the community, this project supplies an outstanding example."

Challengers Tennis Club for Boys and Girls, Los Angeles, Calif.

Designed by Killefer Flammang Architects of Santa Monica, this project is the first tennis center in South Los Angeles. The site consists of four tennis courts and a tennis club and also contains bleachers and viewing stands to provide the audience with places to sit and enjoy the tennis matches.

The energy efficiency strategies embedded in the design include proper building orientation to maximize use of daylighting; the use of natural ventilation; use of high efficiency fluorescent lighting throughout the facility; and shading of windows and roof by a photovoltaic solar array that also provides a portion of the energy used by the building.

The jurors were impressed by the broad-based number of sustainability goals included in this project. "The project's scale is right for the neighborhood, and its design makes a convincing argument for the building's program," they commented. "This project takes a holistic view of the role of the building in its community. For a modest building, this takes large steps toward energy efficiency and sustainable design."

Lake View Terrace Branch Library, Los Angeles, Calif.

Lake View Terrace Branch Library in the City of Los Angeles is a model of environmentally sustainable design and a civic landmark. Designed by Fields Devereaux Architects and Engineers of Los Angeles, the building was designed to respond to the community's desire for a library that reflects the rancho tradition of the region, with interior spaces organized around an open central courtyard.

The orientation of the building and shaping of its forms protects the interior spaces from direct sunlight, controlling heat gain and preventing glare while maximizing daylight and views. A passive evaporative cooling tower marks the building entry and captures prevailing winds, delivering cooler air into the library lobby and courtyard.

"This is an elegant building and a delightful space that makes sense -- and contributes to its community and to the practice of sustainable design as an outstanding example," the jurors declared. "Its clarity is its strength. The daylighting design helps to orient building users and it has a nice rhythm inside and out." According to the jurors, all experts in energy-efficient and sustainable design, it was obvious that this project truly embodies sustainable design.