Utilizing sustainable resources in the new construction has helped Valley reach its gold and silver standards.
By Paul Rosenbusch, Staff Writer
The opening of the $37 million Monarch Center Monday marks the seventh installment in a series of $626 million of new sustainable construction and renovations that are shaping the future of Valley College.
The 41,000 square-foot, 2-story contemporary architecture facility is built to meet Leadership in Energy and Environmental Science (LEED) Silver standards, and features insulated roofs, storm-water-mitigation creeks, and recycled or renewable materials where possible.
“The new landscape is relaxing to spend time in,” said Manny Cordova, an undecided freshman who plans to transfer to CSUN.”The new architecture is very cool and inviting, especially the second level patio.” Cordova graduated from Arleta High School, which is a fairly new campus. He added, “the antiquated facilities at Valley college really take away from the learning experience, so this addition to the other new buildings on campus is a huge improvement.”
The Monarch Center joins the Allied Health and Sciences Center, Library and Academic Resources Center, the Student Services Complex as important new facilities on campus. These buildings include features such as storm-water retention, high efficiency light fixtures, low-flow toilets, solar panels, and renewable resources such as bamboo. These new buildings use occupancy sensors, automatic and manual shades, and modern insulation to regulate temperature.
The new facilities at LACCD campuses are funded by “The Sustainable Building Program,” known as Proposition A passed in 2001 for $1.2 billion, Proposition AA in 2003 for $980 million, and Measure J in 2008 for $3.5 billion. Over 600 of the 825 proposed projects have been completed at the nine campuses, with $1 billion remaining on the more than 200 projects.
More than 60 structures have been built district-wide, which serve the 250,000-plus students who attend LACCD campuses annually. Over 300,000 square feet of new projects have been opened at Valley.
Ten projects remain for Valley, including the Community Workforce Center set to open this year, a new administration building, which is under construction, and a Media and Performing Arts Center, which is in the design stages. Valley is close to completing the new facilities and renovating the current ones to meet its construction goals in 2019.