Community Foundation Santa Cruz County
Programming, Concept Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Construction Documentation, Construction Administration
Contractor: Devcon Construction, Inc.
Owner’s Representative: Nova Partners
Civil Engineer: Ifland Engineers, Inc.
Landscape: Joni L Janecki & Associates
Structural Engineers: Jon Brody Structural Engineers
Mechanical Engineer: Airtec Services
Electrical Engineer: Triad Electric
Plumbing Engineer: Castro Plumbing Services
Acoustical Consultant: Charles M. Salter Associates
LEED Consulting: Enovity, Inc.
Architectural Photography: Tim Griffith
Certified LEED Gold
The Community Foundation Santa Cruz County has helped local donors invest wisely in their community since 1982. The Foundation desired a permanent home in order to control their administrative costs and securely anchor the non-profit as a community resource. With generosity from local donors and philanthropists, the Foundation has developed a new home in Aptos, California. The new 10,000 square-foot office building is located on a 30,000 square-foot site at the corner of Soquel Drive and Aptos Rancho Road, a predominantly commercial district in the center of town.
Given the proportions of the site and its single-story commercial corridor context, the massing of the building is a key component of the design. In principle, the building consists of two wings, connected by a steel bridge structure. The north wing is a two-story concrete parallelogram that runs parallel to the edges of the uniquely shaped site in order to respect the required setbacks, while maximizing the allowable square footage. The south wing is a single-story box clad in cedar siding.
The south wing houses all of the public components of the building’s program including a resource library and a large community room for various meetings and workshops. On its roof, an outdoor terrace designed for social events and gatherings opens out to capture picturesque views of the tree-lined vista to the east, while shielding the constant traffic noise from Soquel Drive to the west.
The building was designed with many green building concepts in mind, starting with how the building is oriented on the site, to providing access to natural light and views in every room, to its core building materials. Poured-in-place concrete exterior walls with fly-ash express a sense of permanence in-line with the Foundation’s values and offer sustainability and low-maintenance benefits. The FSC-certified cedar siding on the exterior of the building provides a tactile counterpoint to the color and texture of the concrete. A vertical mesh trellis system lines the two-story façade at the entry court to shelter office spaces from southern sun exposure and enhance thermal comfort for interior spaces. The same vertical mesh trellis system wraps the main staircase in the building, connecting the interior spaces with the exterior environment. The project received LEED Gold certification.