Santiago Canyon College Humanities Building

Orange, California

Creating outdoor learning spaces for a multi-function complex

The LEED Gold Humanities Building created a flexible new learning center for the expanding community college. The three-story, 97,500-square-foot facility represents 34 new classrooms for the campus, covering 18 disciplines.

The complex features an anthropology lab, a 3,000-square-foot campus IT center, a campus-wide writing and language center, a tutoring center and office space for faculty and administrators. A 290-seat auditorium anchors larger classes and lectures. The design supports indoor-outdoor learning, including two open-air classrooms. Overhangs provide a variety of shaded area and help reduce energy costs.

On-site photovoltaic panels generate 19 percent of the facility’s daily needs. A cool roof, water-efficient landscaping and plumbing, daylight harvesting and high-efficiency HVAC units help conserve energy and water. Overall, the building performs 20 percent better than California’s Title 24 standards.

To re-enforce the indoor-outdoor connections, meandering pathways and reflective spaces offer additional studying and teaching spaces for instructors.

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