For its Work at Cañada College, ELS Wins Two Honors from ENR California

by: French Clements | August 20, 2021

We’re pleased to announce that our striking new Kinesiology and Wellness Building, which opened this year at Cañada College, has won two Regional Best Project Awards from ENR California: an Award of Merit in the category of Higher Education/Research and an Excellence in Safety Award, both in the Northern California region.

The Kinesiology and Wellness Building at Cañada College, Redwood City, CA.

For this design-build project, we partnered with Blach Construction and worked closely with the San Mateo County Community College District on a new gateway for Cañada’s bucolic campus. Cantilevered over its hilltop site and highly visible from Highway 280, the building unites once-dispersed kinesiology, athletics and dance facilities into a dynamic, holistic home for wellness. It replaces an outmoded concrete gym facility on the same site that lacked an initially-planned pool, adequate HVAC, and sufficient windows. With 115,000 sf of programming spread over just two stories, it benefits from an activated 30,000 sf roof, with a running track and multi-use areas surrounded by inspirational 360-degree views.

Among many other sustainability-oriented characteristics, the building’s perforated metal rooftop shade canopy significantly reduces solar gain, with a form inspired by mountain ridgelines nearby. A central, translucent, polycarbonate lightbox is key to the project’s daylighting strategy and doubles as vertical circulation to the activated roof. The project’s safety recognition comes from a panel of experts who convene annually to consider each candidate project’s overall safety program, OSHA recordable incident rates, lost-time accident rates and total worker hours on the job. We thank Blach Construction for its work in submitting this project to ENR’s awards program.