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Home > By DEPARTMENTS > Leadership and Governance for Sustainability > Change Management at Governance Level

Green at Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD)

The Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) has set its sights on becoming the first community college system in the nation to generate all of its own electricity as it undertakes one of the largest public sector sustainable building efforts in the United States.

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LACCD’s $5.7 billion budget came from bond referendums to renovate and modernize all nine college campuses, making the district’s program one of the largest in the world.

LACCD Timeline for Green Economy

In 2002, the LACCD adopted a sustainable renewal policy mandating that all new buildings that receive 50% or more in bond funding be constructed to LEED standards. The LACCDdistrict is the first in the nation to adopt such a policy.

More than 85 buildings are expected to meet LEED™ (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards and nine will be energy independent and carbon neutral.

The first phase of the district’s Renewable Energy Plan calls for installing one megawatt of solar electric capacity – enough to power 1,000 homes – at each of the district’s nine campuses over the next couple years. The plan also includes the installation of enough photovoltaic panels, geothermal energy technologies, and wind turbines on each campus to address all its electricity needs. Some strategies include using renewable sources, retrofitting the campuses to make them more energy efficient, and developing green power to reduce the colleges’ energy costs.

The district is also partnering with four-year colleges, businesses, public schools, and unions to foster the creation of green jobs and certification programs to meet the growing needs of industry.

LACCD is also creating a state-certified sustainable development curricula, and training students for jobs in a number of green fields including architecture, business, construction, design, transportation, and utilities. Academic programs and courses are aligned with the emerging green technology industries that have the highest potential for job growth in the Los Angeles area.

LACCD’s commitment to implementing cutting-edge green technologies in its sustainable building program offers students an invaluable opportunity to learn in a living laboratory that incorporates practical hands-on experiences into its green jobs curricula.

Largest Green Building in LACCD

At 159,000 square feet, the Performing and Fine Arts Center at East Los Angeles College will be the largest single project in the Los Angeles Community College District's Sustainable Building Program.

East L.A. College has been a quiet little corner of the District, but it has the largest enrollment of any of the community colleges with approximately 28,000 students.

The Fine Arts Center at East Los Angeles College will consist of:

  • The art gallery, a three-story, 40,382-square-foot building that will house about 8,000 pieces, including the Vincent Price collection. It will have a 120-seat lecture hall for art history classes, seven gallery spaces and workshops. The premises will be monitored by 40 security cameras. A specially designed heating, air conditioning and ventilation system will protect and preserve artwork.
  • The theater building, a two-story, 42,110-square-foot structure containing a 240-seat drama theater and a 118-seat black box theater, used for experimentation with lighting, sound and scenery, and smaller group performances. This building also will have rehearsal rooms and workshops on costume design and makeup.
  • The recital hall, a two-story, 77,078-square-foot structure with a 355-seat recital area as its centerpiece. It will offer facilities for painting, sculpture, print making, two dance studios, design and drawing studios, choir and music libraries, a band room, a recording studio, music computer labs and rehearsal space. The design studio will include two gas and three electric kilns for baking and firing ceramics.

“Most of the money on this project was spent inside the buildings,” said Robert Carley, Taisei's vice president of business development. “The students are going to have the opportunity to really express themselves in various art forms.”


Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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