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Welcome

At LPA, sustainable architecture is our passion.

For more than 45 years we've been advocating the message that sustainable design can be achieved on any project, budget, building type and location.

Sustainability is the foundation of timeless design—design that transcends culture and trends.

This blog is a reflection of our approach—our approach to Integrated Sustainable Design.

Please submit post requests and/or ideas to ctarnow[at]lpainc[dot]com.

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LPA Studies

Reimage Reposition   Ezine Cover 150Peruse the latest edition of LPA Studies, a monthly magazine capturing the architectural design process from concept to creation.

Integrated Sustainable Design

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Seismic Retrofit: New Lives for Old Buildings

  
  
  
  
Structural and seismic engineering expert Bryan Seamer breaks down the seismic retrofit at Orange County's Tower of Hope.

By Guest Blogger Bryan Seamer

LPA has been working with the Diocese of Orange to bring the Christ Cathedral campus Arboretum and Tower of Hope into the 21st century without disturbing the architectural significance of its rich history. The Diocese acquired the historic campus, formerly known as Crystal Cathedral campus, in Garden Grove, Calif. in February 2012. It was the original worship area for Reverend Robert Schuller's Crystal Cathedral Ministries, and is now serving as the home for the relocated St. Callistus parish.

LPA Expands Integrated Sustainable Design Work to Texas

  
  
  
  
Orange County's top architecture firm announces its expansion to San Antonio, furthering their integrated sustainable design work.

Friends and Colleagues,

We wanted to share some exciting news with you this month. On July 1, 2014, LPA will be welcoming OCO Architects, a 22-person firm located in San Antonio, as part of the LPA team. This announcement has been a little over a year in the making. Finding the right firm and the right people to team up with required both firms to consider, not only the tangible, but also the intangible attributes of each company. After much research and many discussions, we have found the right firm and the right people.

Six Strategies for a Successful Building Repositioning

  
  
  
  
Repositioning Cover

By Guest Blogger Dan Ringler

Some call it rebranding, others call it repurposing or reimaging. Repositioning is the word that LPA prefers because it speaks to what most building owners and developers envision— to transform a property so it's expressed in a whole new way, both aesthetically and functionally.

Student Design Competitions: Where We Learn from Student Architects

  
  
  
  
Higher Education Facilities designer Ozzie Tapia sheds light on a thrilling educational opportunity through the AIAOC Student Design Competition.

By Guest Blogger Ozzie Tapia

As professional architects and designers, we consider ourselves to be life-long learners. We find it critical to have a connection between the profession and academia. It starts in the traditional K-12 setting; perhaps there was a catalyst in our youth that sparked our love for design. It continues as we grow with our higher education credentials, proving ourselves as industry experts, competent to do the work that we love. Even when we’ve “made it” and are working in the industry, we have to continue to learn about industry trends, new technologies and growing our credentials.

As a student, I had the opportunity to participate in some student design competitions. It was an exciting experience that allowed me to put in practice what I had been learning in terms of taking a project through an architectural processfrom analysis, design conception to development, refinement and final solution. It also served as validation that I was on the right track. Through mentoring opportunities with a practicing professional I learned about dynamics of the profession that are not part of an academic education, like how to be efficient and deliberate with how you spend your design time.

How to Make the New California Building Code Work for You

  
  
  
  
MEP Engineer Jim Montross points out key changes to the new California Building Code related to lighting design.

By Guest Blogger Jim Montross

As a heat wave crosses California this week, we asked ourselves what we should expect in the summer months. Will we experience some rolling brown outs this year? Will we see a spike in our energy consumption, and in our bills?

This year, a revised edition of the Building Energy Efficiency Standards, commonly known as Title 24, will be released. Updates to the code occur every three years and are meant to routinely improve the performance of new construction in California. According to the California Energy Commission, the 2013 standards are at least 30% more efficient than the previous code for non-residential buildings.

From the Practical to the Poetic: Understanding Integrated Design

  
  
  
  
LPA's Don Pender shares how to create an effective learning environment at McBride High in Long Beach, CA.

By Guest Blogger Don Pender
Part 1 of 3

Brazilian architect Joao Batista Vilanova Artigas said, "I admire poets. What they express with a couple of words, requires us a ton of brick." As designers, planners, educators and builders of 21st century learning spaces, we are really dealing with far more practical realities than even a ton of brick, as Artigas describes. We aspire to address the substantial demands for practicality and at the same time achieve something more significant—something I will call “the Poetic.”

The Business of Branding for Commercial Interiors

  
  
  
  
Across industries, company leaders are seeking progressive design firms to help them express their brand and transform their office interiors.

The digital age has revolutionized the ways that consumers research and find products and services they want. This makes it increasingly imperative for companies to share strong statements about who they are and how they can serve—both online and in the real world. Across industries, company leaders are seeking progressive design firms to help them develop and express their brand while morphing from traditional offices into open, modern work environments.

Five Trends in K-12 School Design Everyone Should Consider

  
  
  
  
Designer Kimberley Coffeen shares expert tips for K-12 school design and their impacts to education.

By Guest Blogger Kimberley Coffeen, CEFPI, LEED AP BD+C

We are living through a time where many industries and fields are facing a dramatic shift. Educational programming and K-12 school design are certainly no exceptions. While there are many ways to address the needs of today’s learning environments, not all need to be grandiose. Instead, we can focus on small moves that will have the greatest change, like buying new furniture, improving connectivity and developing a technology plan that supports long-term training and upkeep. Today, we dive into five trends in K-12 school design and their impacts to education:

Engineering Healthy Schools with Platinum Results

  
  
  
  
LPA's newest principal breaks down the sophisticated LEED for Schools Platinum engineering at Mongtomery Middle School.

Recent studies by Lawrence Berkeley National Labs indicate that more than half of Calif. K-12 classrooms do not meet code-required ventilation rates, while properly ventilated classrooms reduce student absences associated with illness. Additional studies by the same researchers have demonstrated that occupants of under-ventilated spaces demonstrate impaired decision making performance.

It is clear that a well-designed classroom that includes proper ventilation, good acoustics, superior indoor air quality (IAQ) and abundant daylight has a positive impact on students’ attendance, concentration and performance. At Montgomery Middle School, each classroom includes multiple systems and design elements that combine to provide a healthy, efficient and adaptable green school environment.

K-12 Schools Designer Receives FAIA Designation

  
  
  
  
Meet Orange County’s Newest Fellow of Architecture, Wendy Rogers

Receiving one of the greatest individual honors from the American Institute of Architects (AIA), LPA Design Principal Wendy Rogers has been elected to the AIA College of Fellows, joining President Dan Heinfeld and Design Principal Glenn Carels, as the firm’s third FAIA.

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