Central Valley Business Journal: MJC net-zero building saves energy, money

Darden Architects’ project Yosemite Community College District New District Office Building was recently featured in Central Valley Business Journal.

MODESTO — When it was time for Yosemite Community College District to replace its World War II-era Central Services building, designers opted for a state-of-the-art energy efficient facility.

The new building, which houses central offices for Modesto Junior College and Columbia College, is at 2201 Blue Gum Avenue in Modesto. Departments once spread over three buildings are now under one roof. Workers moved in last fall.

“I came into the building when we first moved in, and I can tell you personally it’s really fantastic being in here,” said District Public Affairs Director Coni Chavez. “The operational efficiency of being able to work with folks and just be closer to them in the building has been helpful to me.”

The facility’s chief selling point is that it’s a net zero energy building, which means it produces at least as much energy as it consumes.

It’s good for the environment, but the district’s main consideration was financial. The $21 million facility was built with Measure E funds, a $326.1 million bond approved by voters in 2004 for Yosemite Community College District improvements.

“We have been excellent stewards of our Measure E funds,” said Facilities Planning and Operations Director Judy Lanchester. “In building a net zero building, there is enormous cost savings over the life of the building.”

The district hired Modesto construction management company, Kitchell, to oversee the construction of the building, while Darden Architects of Fresno was hired to design it. At the recent Central Valley Facilities Expo, representatives from Kitchell and Darden spoke about the building and some of its features.

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MJC net-zero building saves energy, money

Source: Central Valley Business Journal, Sim Risso


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