Ah-nold you’re Green! CALGreen and DSA-HPI

Our PJHM Co-Lab tradition keeps going strong, and today was no exception. Architect extraordinaire Dave Bell of PJHM gave a powerful and informative talk on the future of California’s Green Code, and before you begin asking yourself how code could be so amazing, Arnold Schwarzenegger was virtually present and really made it exciting. Not only did we leave with the reminder to be fit with our building design, the following key points about CALGreen were hit home. We see sharing this info as a benefit not only to ourselves but to our California clients. Here’s the deal:

2004 – Executive Order by the Schwarzenegger administration created the “Green Building Action Team”

2008 – California Green Building Code Standards went into effect, and everything was voluntary.

2011 – CALGreen went into effect, in which many  measures that had been voluntary under the ’08 version were now mandatory

July 2013 – CALGreen 2013 will be published

January 2014 – The 2013 CALGreen Building Standards Code will go into effect, and expect to comply.

Dave Bell’s rendition of an Ah-nold CALGreen Ad 

What does this mean for District clients and architects?

It means a whole bunch if you haven’t already been working with LEED, CHPS and/or current CALGreen Standards. DSA has not yet adopted the entire 2010 CALGreen, only various sections, so perhaps districts have been slow to adopt green standards in general. With that in mind, we are curious how many more high performance standards the upcoming 2013 code will make mandatory.

Pakuma K8 School, San Bernardino City Unified School District

Isn’t this going to cost money up front to incorporate more mandatory green requirements?

Answer? Yes, probably, and that is why it is so important to get the word out now, so you can plan for what’s coming. It’s difficult to say what will be enforced in the future, so there is an alternative. For instance, PJHM has been partnering closely with our clients and have multiple projects utilizing the CHPS-HPI (High Performance Incentive) offered by DSA and OPSC. Currently Irvine USD’s Stonegate Elementary, and Jeffrey Trail Middle School, San Bernardino USD’s Pakuma K8, Romoland SD’s Ethan A. Chase Middle School and San Diego USD’s Patrick Henry High School Theater are incorporating CHPS-HPI.  This incentive is great for California districts who want or need a bit of assistance funding high performance standards into their new construction and modernization projects, and it incorporates many of the CALGreen high performance standards.  A check from the state ain’t too bad either.

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Stonegate Elementary School, Irvine Unified School District


Jeffrey Trail Middle School, Irvine Unified School District


Patrick Henry High School Theater, San Diego Unified School District


Ethan A. Chase Middle School, Romoland School District