24 April 2013

Steinberg wins honor for CSU housing

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CSU Fullerton Student Housing Phase III, a 348,000-square-foot student-housing complex here, has been awarded “Best Overall Sustainable Design” in the California Higher Education Sustainability Conference’s 8th annual Energy Efficiency and Sustainability Best Practices Awards Competition. The project team, which includes international design firm Steinberg Architects, will be honored at a ceremony during the conference, set for June 23-27 at UC Santa Barbara.

The complex is a design-build project designed by Steinberg and constructed by PCL Construction Services Inc. In 2012, it was certified LEED Platinum by the US Green Building Council, the first LEED-Platinum-certified project in the California State University system.

It is also the largest construction project built on the Fullerton campus. Housing 1,900 students, it more than doubles the campus’s residential population. First occupied for the Fall 2011 semester, the complex has six buildings with a total of 1,056 beds. Typical rooms are double occupancy, traditional dormitory style distributed among five buildings, each of which is five stories tall. The sixth building is single level containing a dining hall.

The project scope includes housing offices, conference and classroom space, laundry and community rooms on every level, and a central plant. Extensive site work includes a large central pedestrian piazza area with a fountain, new student parking lot, generous landscaping, improvements to campus-wide storm drainage and utility infrastructure.

According to Rob Steinberg, president of Steinberg Architects, “We wanted to help the University reach a new level of sustainable design while providing the students a great on-campus place to live, learn and converse. It was really a team effort and a tremendous accomplishment for all involved.”

As GlobeSt.com reported last week, so much emphasis is placed on high-tech products ingreen development, such as solar-energy systems, that it’s easy to forget the low-tech options that can take designers and developers far. “We need to be aware of the latest products and technology that can help us create affordable, sustainable communities,” said Manny Gonzalez, a principal with KTGY Group Inc., in a prepared statement. “But just as import are the ‘low-tech’ opportunities like using 2×6-ft studs at 24-in. centers and installing electrical outlets that stop ‘vampire’ charging.”

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