Winner of an Orchid at the Orchids and Onions Award Ceremony in 2020, this project is a valuable public resource and amenity for the County of San Diego. The building combines several governmental and administrative departments that provides services from property records and tax collecting, to historical records and wedding ceremonies.
Mandated by the County of San Diego, the environmentally responsible building is slated to be the first certified Net Zero Energy archive facility in the US and LEED Gold Certified, utilizing a 140-kW photovoltaic array that provides enough energy for the entire building with a 10 percent buffer for future growth. With such stringent sustainability and resiliency goals in mind, the design team limited the hard-wearing palette and maximized daylighting lighting and sun-control.
Using a design-build delivery the one-story building utilizes tilt-up concrete panels and open web steel joists for fast construction and column-free spaces that house open offices, a counter for public services and the archival vault. Key features include a public street under the butterfly roof and a PV-clad shading structure in the parking lot that incentivizes fuel-efficient vehicles. Other notable features of the facility are the two on-site bioswales used for stormwater management, a critical component due to the proximity to the San Diego River and its flood plain.