Going Green in San Diego on New Laboratory Facility

Daylighting can improve indoor comfort and that was a key consideration for Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Architects LLP (ZGF) in designing the new J. Craig Venter Institute in La Jolla, Calif. The 45,000-square-foot laboratory facility is located within the University of California, San Diego campus and will include features such as a wood window curtainwall and storefront system, as well as metal panels. The $35 million facility was also designed as an environmentally friendly and “net zero energy” biological laboratory.

McCarthy Building Companies Inc., which is serving as the general contractor, broke ground September 20. The project is targeted for completion in June 2013, with a tenant move-in date of September 2013.

According to Ted Hyman, FAIA, a partner with ZGF and principal architect for the new J. Craig Venture Institute, La Jolla, the new research facility will incorporate high performance architecture. The building massing and envelope have been designed to maximize the use of daylight to improve indoor comfort while further reducing overall building energy use. The building is proposed to be net-zero for electrical energy, intended to produce as much electricity on-site as it consumes annually. This is expected to be made possible though a number of means, such as the incorporation of operable windows and efficient lighting. In addition, a photovoltaic roof will generate on-site renewable energy.

The project team is targeting LEED Platinum Certification.