L.A. Community College Building Project Is First in U.S. To Receive Breeam Certification

L.A. Community College Building Project Is First in U.S. To Receive Breeam Certification

The Los Angeles Community College District has announced that its historic Van de Kamp Bakery Building has become the first construction conversion project in the U.S. to achieve a Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) rating. The building will become the Northeast Center of Los Angeles City College.

BREEAM seeks to minimize the adverse effects of new buildings on the environment while promoting healthy indoor conditions for the occupants. The environmental impacts of a new building, such as energy use, waste disposal transportation concerns and water usage, are assessed at the design stage

Two U.K.-based BREEAM assessors, Amy Garrod and Lionel Delorme, attended the 2005 LACCD Sustainability Conference on Friday, Dec. 2, 2005 to present the award to LACCD.

"This is the first building in the U.S. to be assessed under the BREEAM system," said Delorme. "It recognizes LACCD's forward-thinking policies and its efforts to create a community centric building with reduced environmental impacts and increased comfort for its students."

"LACCD has done an excellent job of engaging the local community to shape the college's design, integrating renewables, and using of sustainable materials," said Garrod, who assessed the building. "The adaptive reuse of the existing bakery building retains the historical value of the site. The building's design includes photovoltaic panels, high energy efficiency, and green building education stations, all of which contributes to the building's BREEAM rating."

The Van de Kamp building will also be built to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified standards. LEED Green Building Rating System, similar to the U.K.'s BREEAM, is the U.S. standard for developing high-performance sustainable buildings.

"By being the first in the world to seek both BREEAM and LEED credentials, LACCD continues to be a leader in the field of sustainable development," said Larry H. Eisenberg, LACCD’s executive director of Facilities Planning and Development. “Our colleges serve one of the most diverse populations in the world and it is our commitment to teach them that to think sustainable, we must think global.”

The Los Angeles Community College District is undertaking one of the largest sustainable building programs in the United States. Funded by Propositions A and AA, which provide $2.2 billion in voter-approved funds, LACCD has set the goal to self-produce 25% of its energy needs with 10% utilizing photovoltaic cells.