Project DescriptionSituated on the north end of the San Juan College Campus, the School of Energy facility provides classroom and lab space designed specifically for the teaching and outreach programs of the school. Before this construction, the school was housed in multiple buildings in Farmington, not all on the college campus. The new facility provides a single place for all school programs and creates a distinct community image; harmonizing with the campus while asserting its regional influence.
The School provides workforce training to the oil and gas industry in addition to degree programs for San Juan College students. It is one of only a few similar programs in the country, and has attracted industry interest from the region, nation, and overseas. The building can support large training events in addition to standard classes, and its entry lobby is expanded to provide space for those gatherings. Here students can interact with industry partners during the course of the regular schedules.
The building itself is built on the side of a steeply sloping hill and orients itself parallel to the contours. This allows for the very large footprint to be built with only a small internal step, which is used to gain ceiling height in the larger gathering/seminar spaces. The double-height lab spaces are lined on one side with a two-story classroom spine, allowing the classrooms to have visual access into the labs on both floors. All of the labs are visible from internal circulation areas as well, in keeping with the School’s desire to create a display of what they do. Throughout the building there is extensive use of glass for openness, providing a warm, inviting environment. Where orientation dictates control of sunlight and glare, exterior perforated metal screens are provided to filter the light and lessen its impact on the building’s internal environment.
D/P/S provided the design services for this project as part of a Design-Build team with Jaynes Construction of New Mexico. It was produced in a very collaborative process that included stakeholders from the College, the School, the General Contractor, subcontractors and engineering consultants. The construction process was fast-tracked such that it began before the design documents were complete.