Developed as part of an extensive campus upgrade for El Camino Community College District in Torrance, California, the new Humanities building is a sustainable answer to a modern blend of inviting, artistic and functional architecture. The 83,900-square-foot, three-story structure solves the problem of insufficient teaching space by providing more classrooms and a new home for communications, journalism, foreign language and English departments, and adds another thread in the modern principles prevalent in the fabric of the campus' buildings. Designed by sustainability experts at LPA, the high-profile Humanities building—located at the main entrance—also serves as a gateway to the campus.
The new classrooms are spacious while still retaining a cozy, comfortable feel and provide superb sound-proofing to reduce outside noise. Natural daylighting fills the classrooms and offices, further enhancing the campus' character through simple and efficient details that are housed in a building that is 23 percent better than California's Title 24 standards—the strictest energy code in the country. Special building features include a cast concrete structure with infill walls, allowing for future expansion of classrooms; translucent glass panels with diffusion panels to limit distractions; suspended recycled wood ceilings; and a faculty lounge deck.View all projects