With an estimated 800 visitors steadily streaming in at its May 6 Grand Opening, students, staff and faculty at West City Campus wasted no time in showing off what makes this newest campus for San Diego Continuing Education the “Campus of Excellence for Hospitality and Consumer Sciences.”
As guests assembled for the ceremonial ribbon cutting, they were quickly greeted by Culinary Arts students serving hundreds of fresh Asian Spring Rolls with a spicy dipping sauce, Indonesian chicken skewers, and Insalata Caprese Canapés from a menu they developed and prepared as part of a 600-hour certificate program.
Fashion students provided a show of their custom garments and home fashions, while students in the Emeritus Program for students aged 55+ performed big band and Dixieland jazz numbers and sang popular favorites to an applauding, toe-tapping crowd in a curved concrete amphitheatre.
“We are so grateful to San Diego voters for approving Propositions S and N, which provided the funding for this important renovation,” said Dr. Anthony Beebe, President of San Diego Continuing Education. “Now our consumer sciences programs have this state-of-the-art educational facility, which creates a rich environment that ultimately enhances a student's learning.”
In addition to Culinary Arts, Fashion, Sewing and Emeritus programs, the nearly 39,000 square feet, $18 million campus also includes programs to enhance students’ skills in Business Information Technology, English for nonnative English Speakers, Parenting Education, Arts and low-fee personal enrichment classes as part of Continuing Education.
San Diego Community College District Chancellor Constance Carroll characterized the West City campus as a “wonderful and rich addition” to the community and the San Diego Community College District.
“The Continuing Education team crafted the dream that we’re all celebrating today,” added Carroll. “Because of this bold thinking, this dream, we are here today in a state-of-the-art facility that supports the vocational and technical training that our students so richly deserve.”
San Diego Community College Board of Trustees President Rich Grosch, a longtime resident of the Point Loma/Ocean Beach area, praised the campus for its “green” features. “It’s really important that we are good citizens, not only to our city, but our earth, and with this project, we’ve done that, and we’ve done it in a big way.”
All construction and major renovations by the San Diego Community College District are designed and built to obtain the highest possible Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. West City is expected to be certified, at minimum, LEED Silver.
The project was recognized by San Diego Gas & Electric’s Sustainable Communities program as a Sustainable Communities Champion. The program works with building owners and design teams early on in the planning process to support their efforts to build green, highly energy efficient buildings, and provides cash incentives to do so.
Frank Spasaro, Energy Efficiency Partnership Manager for San Diego Gas & Electric, presented the district with an incentive check of $52,305 and a commemorative plaque, and saluted the campus’ “extraordinary energy savings.”
“The West City Campus demonstrates the San Diego Community College District’s commitment to a sustainable future for the San Diego region,” praised Spasaro.Sustainable features of the West City Campus include:
- Low E-rated windows and solar tubes help maximize natural daylighting, reducing energy demands on cooling and artificial lighting.
- Sensors automatically dim lights in response to available lighting.
- Low-flow and waterless plumbing fixtures reduce water consumption by over 40% as compared to a standard building, saving an estimated 386,000 gallons of water per year.
- Economizer units on the roof will circulate fresh outside air into the building.
- Low-fume emitting paint, adhesives and carpeting, along with automatic CO2 monitors help maintain good indoor air quality.
- Sorting and recycling the construction waste diverted about 90% of the project’s construction waste approximately 200 tons – from the local landfills. This included grinding the concrete foundations and parking lot from the old buildings to reuse as base under the new building.
- A high percentage of new construction materials are made from recycled materials. This includes countertops made from recycled newsprint, fences made from recycled plastics, and play surfaces made from recycled tires.
- The use of porous concrete in the parking lots serves as a storm water management tool, minimizing runoff to the San Diego Bay and River.
- Trees and shrubs have been selected for their compatibility to the area, to provide shade and to minimize the need for water. A high efficiency irrigation system utilizes a controller that adjusts itself to the local weather.