Buildings recognized for design, environmental excellence

10.11.2013 | By Rob Vanya

Buildings earn awards

The design award was presented at a recent San Jacinto College Board of Trustees meeting. On hand for the presentation were, from left: Ken Lynn, vice chancellor of fiscal affairs; Dr. Allatia Harris, vice chancellor of strategic initiatives; San Jacinto College Chancellor Dr. Brenda Hellyer; Marsha Bowden, Morris Architects; Dean Barnes, Morris Architects vice president; Dr. Bill Raffetto, North Campus interim provost; and Luis Alvarez, Morris Architects. Photo credit: Amanda L. Booren, San Jacinto College marketing, public relations, and government affairs department.

Buildings recognized for design, environmental excellence

Rob Vanya -- October 11, 2013

PASADENA, Texas – Two new facilities at San Jacinto College recently earned significant recognition, one for environmental excellence, and one for design and environmental excellence.

The North Campus Welcome Center earned the 2013 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Houston Design Award, as well as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification. The Central Campus Transportation Center also earned a LEED Silver Certification, which is above standard. Both facilities are part of a $295 million bond referendum approved in 2008 that funds new facilities and renovations at all three San Jacinto College campuses.

The North Campus Welcome Center earned the AIA Houston award based largely on the way the facility attractively unites a new structure with existing buildings and subtly transitions from new to older facilities. The 38,863-square-foot Welcome Center opened in January 2012. The building provides a “one-stop shop” for student services such as testing and assessment, educational planning and counseling, career and employment assistance, First Year Experience programs, financial aid assistance, and disability services.

The North Campus Welcome Center, and the Central Campus Transportation Center earned the LEED Silver Certification after an extensive review by the U.S. Green Building Council based on adherence to stringent environmental standards.

Bryan Jones, San Jacinto College associate vice chancellor of facilities and construction, says earning the LEED certification is all part of being good citizens and responsible stewards. “The goal of the College leadership is to provide facilities that feature positive and healthy environments for students, employees, and the community,” Jones commented. “The structures make efficient use of light sources, which makes them bright and more pleasant to work in. Indoor air quality promotes good learning. The buildings are energy efficient, and water usage is minimized, which helps to lower operating costs.”

The 92,000-square-foot Central Campus Transportation Center opened in August 2011. It houses the latest in technology and factory automotive equipment, which enables students to train for servicing vehicles from General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Chrysler.

Morris Architects and San Jacinto College worked closely together throughout the planning and construction phases to ensure that the new buildings would meet LEED standards. “We closely collaborated on all phases, for example finding the best lighting and views for every building window, selecting local brick to match that of existing buildings, and reclaiming from trees that were removed during site work to make wooden benches,” commented Dean Barnes, Morris Architects vice president.

About San Jacinto College

Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. The Achieving the Dream Leader College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of 30,000 students in more than 200 degree and certificate options, including university transfer and career preparation. Students also benefit from the College’s job training programs, renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $630 million each year to the Texas workforce. San Jacinto College. Your Goals. Your College.

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