High Performance Architecture
December 5th, 2013
By Eera Babtiwale, Environmental Analyst
Middle College High School (MCHS), located on the campus of LA Southwest College, demonstrates how sustainability is the way forward, serving as an example of how sustainable design is synonymous with good building design. The project is the result of a unique collaboration between the Los Angeles Unified School District, Los Angeles Community College District, Southwest College and the design-build team of HMC Architects-Bernards Brothers. From design conception to construction, all entities recognized the critical synergy between sustainable design and successful learning environments. As a result of this shared philosophy, the 61,105-GSF high school achieved LEED Gold certification.
September 17th, 2013
Originally targeting LEED Silver certification, HMC recently received news that Los Angeles USD’s Sonia M. Sotomayor Learning Academies was awarded LEED Gold certification—this is HMC’s first high school campus (not just a single building) to earn LEED certification. During the LEED review process, the team submitted an appeal for three more credits and was awarded them, pushing the project into LEED Gold. LAUSD advocated for taking the project from silver to gold, and HMC was able to deliver!
July 22nd, 2013
The HMC Architects/Cal Poly Pomona team of Pablo La Roche, Eera Babtiwale, James Krueger and Brandon Gullotti (Cal Poly grad student) are finalists in MIT’s Climate CoLab competition! The goal of the Climate CoLab is to harness the collective intelligence of thousands of people from all around the world to address global climate change. Inspired by systems like Wikipedia and Linux, the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence developed CoLab as an on-line forum where citizens create, analyze and select detailed proposals for what to do about climate change—seeking to harness collective intelligence through online competitions.
Pablo and the team submitted their research on active green roofs to the Climate CoLab and it has been selected as one of four finalists internationally! Their research is based on the pitch that, a smart green roof that can couple or decouple its thermal mass with the space to help with cooling in the summer and heating in the winter. The team is also integrating applied research results in HMC’s design for Irvine High School #5.
A panel of professionals is jurying the competition, but there is also an online competition for the People’s Choice Award. Please help show support for the team’s research by registering online and voting for this project.
May 28th, 2013
Polytechnic School’s Math and Science Building recently received LEED Gold certification under LEED Schools 2.0 by achieving a total of 48 points. The 30,000-SF Math and Science Building dramatically reshapes Polytechnic School’s high school campus, and includes math classrooms, physics, chemistry and biology laboratories, faculty offices, computer labs and a library. The new building replaces the outdated and undersized existing library and laboratory buildings, which were last updated in the late 1960s, and now provides 21st century facilities to Polytechnic School’s impressive and diverse student population.
April 18th, 2013
Please join HMC Architects and ArchLab for a two-part sustainability workshop for kids (grades 2-5) that focuses on water and energy!
Saturday, April 20
10am to 12pm
3546 Concours Street
Ontario, CA 91764
Part 1: Water
The water workshop will include an interactive presentation about the importance of water conservation and water quality. Kids will build aquifers and then study how pollution affects our precious ground water resource.
Part 2: Energy
The energy workshop will answer the following questions: What is energy? Why do we need it? How can we conserve it? Kids will also learn how they can use the power of the sun to create energy and make yummy treats through a solar cooker experiment.
The workshops are modeled after a successful program that HMC’s ArchLab developed for SMMUSD’s McKinley Elementary School (thanks to a grant from our Designing Futures Foundation). Since then, the workshop has received the USGBC’s IMPACT! award, is being developed into a book, and will be provided as a workshop template on the USGBC’s website for other schools and entities to use.
The workshops are a great opportunity to help educate our future stewards of the environment. If you would like to attend, please RSVP to Eera Babtiwale at firstname.lastname@example.org or 909-263-9909.
April 17th, 2013
By Eera Babtiwale, Environmental Analyst
Earth Day is April 22, and here at HMC we’re taking it a step further by holding a series of noontime events for staff during the entire week. HMC Earth Week, April 20-27, is an opportunity for staff to expand their awareness of sustainability at both the local and the global scale. It’s not about practicing sustainability one day out of the year, it’s about expanding our knowledge and experience so that we’re all empowered to make smart decisions year round.
April 15th, 2013
On April 12, the Design Technology Center (DTC) at Mt. San Antonio College (Mt. SAC) celebrated its grand opening and dedication. The new facility brings together a variety of computer-based design programs with a diverse group of students and faculty to encourage collaboration and interaction. The 66,000-SF DTC includes a 390-seat assembly space, exhibition gallery, model shop, and media labs under one roof. Sustainable strategies were incorporated throughout the design and construction of the facility and the project has received LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
The DTC provides a permanent home to Mt. SAC’s photography department, along with other computer-based design programs such as architecture, interior design, animation, web design, and advertising. The two-story atrium and main entrance create an interactive space, which provides visual connection to gallery and critique areas. The DTC is not only a facility that supports the use of technology, but also an environment that encourages interdisciplinary cooperation and learning.
Sustainable features and savings include:
• Without including the central plant efficiency, energy simulation shows that the project performs 18.2% above Title 24 2005
• Water efficient landscaping strategy reduce water usage by more than 50%
• Low flow plumbing fixtures reduces indoor potable water usage by 51%
• Outdoor air delivery monitoring system with CO2 sensor to ensure comfort for occupants
• Low emitting materials for adhesive and sealants, carpet systems, composite wood as well as paints and coatings.
• Heat island effect is reduced with cool roof and light paving material.
• Lighting and Thermal Comfort control abilities to ensure the performance met user needs.
Architect: HMC Architects
Energy Consultant: HMC ArchLab
LEED Consultant: Farnsworth
Mechanical: BP and Associates
Electrical & Plumbing: DCGA Engineers
Landscape Architect: Campbell & Campbell
Structural Engineer: R.M. Byrd and Associates
Commissioning Agent: P2S Engineering
Construction Manager: Lend Lease
April 5th, 2013
College of the Desert’s Nursing Building Renovation was recently certified LEED GOLD under the LEED NC2.2 rating system. The implementation of high performance design in the renovation project was critical because more than 70% of floorstock in the USA belongs to existing old buildings, according to the US Energy Information Agency. As the result, the building incorporates the following sustainable features:
- Integrated design approach applied in the project to increase energy performance during the design.
- Energy simulation shows that the project performs 43.4% above Title 24 2005, which is approximately more than 60% EUI reduction from CBECS 2003.
- More than 75% of regularly occupied space receives daylight.
- Lighting control for all classrooms.
- Photovoltaic system that offsets more than 25% building energy usage.
- 20% of the total materials are from local and regional areas and the materials contain more than 10% recycled content.
- Low emitting materials for adhesive and sealants, as well as paints and coatings.
- Heat island effect is reduced with cool roof and light paving material.
December 20th, 2012
HMC is one of five firms participating in the AIA’s case studies on the 2030 Commitment Program. Participating firms were interviewed and documented their experiences with the program. The 2030 Commitment Program began in 2009 and is a voluntary initiative for AIA member firms and other entities in the built environment that asks these organizations to make a pledge, develop multi-year action plans, and implement steps that can advance AIA’s goal of carbon neutral buildings by the year 2030.
According to the AIA, the purpose of the case studies was to delve into business factors, behavioral science, and organizational change, to explore how firms can successfully adopt the AIA 2030 Commitment to steer their building portfolios toward lower carbon solutions. The case studies identified patterns that enhance successful implementation, obstacles and challenges encountered by firms through the stages of implementation, and illuminated the unique ways in which firms have addressed and overcome them.
The key findings were that the firms have gained greater insight to the energy performance of their design projects, have improved their process for reporting metrics and are now armed with better real-world success examples to share with clients highlighting the economic value of sustainable design.
November 28th, 2012
University California San Diego’s Torrey Pines Center North office building has received LEED Silver certification. Untouched for more than 30 years, Torrey Pines Center North underwent a radical transformation. Built in the hierarchical era of large perimeter private offices, the new design transforms the interior spaces into a more democratic, open, flexible, modern workplace environment. The renovated facility brings together six University departments, which required careful attention to competing departmental demands of privacy and security in an open office landscape. The final design increases the density and efficiency of private offices and open workstations in a sensitive manner, while providing additional shared collaborative zones and conference spaces. It prioritizes access to natural light and stunning ocean views.
The project team undertook a detailed assessment of the existing mechanical, electrical, plumbing, life safety, and elevator systems including a life-cycle cost analysis for replacement of aging systems with newer, more energy efficient solutions. Sustainable features include an IceBank thermal energy storage system to utilize ice created during off-peak hours for peak daytime cooling needs. The building renovation achieved the following sustainable accomplishments:
• Renovation of existing building near multiple community and campus services
• Preferred parking for low-emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles
• Over 50% of parking is in a structure and a white coating on the roof reduce urban heat island effect
• High-efficiency water closets, urinals, lavatory and kitchen faucets were installed to reduce annual water use by 38%
Energy and Atmosphere
• Projected 15% energy cost savings through high-efficiency lighting and thermal storage
• Enhanced commissioning services performed to verify that the building’s energy-related systems are performing as intended
Materials and Resources
• 95% of the structure was maintained reducing the carbon emissions
• Over 75% of the construction waste was diverted from landfills
• Over 10% of the building materials contain recycled content, by cost
Indoor Environmental Quality
• All interior finishes were selected with low levels of volatile organic compounds to reduce indoor air contamination