By:  Shoma Chatterjee

Hamilton+Aitken Architects is one of seven architectural firms statewide that have been selected by the Division of the State Architect to participate in DSA’s 7x7x7: Design Energy Water program. The seven firms were chosen to develop innovative ideas to conserve energy and water that can be applied to existing schools. According to State Architect Chet Widom, there are more than one thousand school districts in California, with roughly 12,000 campuses. These school buildings have plenty of life left in them – if we can find ways to save energy and water at these schools, while simultaneously improving the quality of education, we can have a major impact on improving the quality of life in California.

H+A has been selected to develop a case study of design, energy-and water-saving improvements at Santa Barbara High School, a historic, architectural gem designed in the Spanish Revival tradition in 1924. H+A will draw on our experience designing school modernizations at several of San Francisco schools dating from the 1920s and 30s, as well as the historic renovation of the Maritime Center in Richmond, CA, a charter school which has been certified LEED Gold. The Maritime Center is on the national register of historic places, and is part of the Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front National Historical Park.

Results of all the case studies will be presented at four schools of architecture in January 2016, and a final presentation will be held concurrent with the Coalition for Adequate School Housing spring conference in late February. For more information, visit the 7x7x7: Design Energy Water website at http://www.7x7x7designenergywater.com/