The County of Orange, Griffin Structures, LPA, Swinerton Builders, and project partners gathered to celebrate July 2022 for the ribbon cutting of the highly anticipated County of Orange Civic Center – a crucial aspect of a 20-year master plan developed and managed by Griffin Structures. This partnership with the County covers 17 acres, 16 County-owned buildings, 4,600 employees and more than 1.6 million SF of space.
This $400M Civic Center was successfully delivered utilizing Progressive Public-Private Partnership (P3) delivery. Griffin Structures, working with LPA Architects and Swinerton Builders, designed, built, and delivered the turn-key project using tax-exempt financing and a long-term lease structure. The benefits of utilizing this P3 structure included, not only improved service delivery and cost effectiveness, but also reduced public sector risk, faster delivery, improved budget certainty, and several additional considerations.
The new Civic Center consolidates and reimagines the workplace for a dozen County departments, and significantly reduces the County’s operating costs. The Civic Center design also reduces energy use in both buildings by more than 76% from the AIA 2030 Commitment benchmark, primarily through passive design strategies.
County Administration South is comprised of a 250,000 SF, six-story office building sited over two levels of subterranean parking. The turn-key facility houses the County’s Public Works, Waste and Recycling, Treasurer-Tax Collector, Auditor-Controller, and Clerk-Recorder Departments, as well as a One Stop Shop, providing “walk up service” from 11 departments serving the County’s constituents. The facility also features a new County Conference Center, complete with approximately 6,600 square feet of conference and events space.
Located directly adjacent to the Administration South building on 645 N. Ross Street, the 365,621 SF Administration North building features mix of private offices, conference rooms, open-plan work areas and a new 300-seat board hearing room for the public to engage with the Board of Supervisors and County staff.
The transit-oriented development (TOD) project is bordered by a future transit plaza and light rail transit stop to the south, service and pedestrian paseo to the east, a central courtyard to the north, and a reinvigorated, pedestrian-friendly street to the west. The project elevations change with solar orientation which allows filtered sunlight to enter the east and west facades while the southern exposure shields the interiors from the harsh southern sunlight, providing a highly energy-efficient aesthetic design.
Both buildings were designed to meet Essential Services Buildings Seismic Safety Act standards and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Silver certification standards.