Three UC Davis design students are creating a model for retrofitting buildings within the San Francisco Presidio that emphasizes how sustainable, energy-efficient design can embrace historical preservation.
At the request of the nonprofit Presidio Alliance, the trio has designed the "green retrofit" of a 1903 barracks near the former Army base's northeast entrance. The design includes ceiling insulation made from recycled newspaper, furniture built with recycled metal, and energy-efficient fluorescent lighting. The design project is the students' senior project for the Department of Environmental Design.
Student T.J. Moran gathered many of the ideas for retrofit materials through an internship in the sustainable building program of the California Integrated Waste Management Board. In addition, Holly Smith has designed an energy-efficient lighting system, while Maria Poole conducted a structural and seismic analysis of the 4,500-square-foot structure.
"The Presidio Alliance's mission is to model sustainability," explains Cheryl Harrison, president of Harrison Design Group and a member of the Presidio Alliance's Leadership Council. "We really want to demonstrate what can be done creatively to take a historical building and retrofit it so it becomes a prototype for the Presidio and Bay Area."
Harrison, a UC Davis alumna, invited the students to tackle the barracks' retrofit for an energy-efficient, green design that respected the fact that the Presidio is designated as a historical site.
The students recently presented their ideas to members of the leadership council, which will use the proposal to apply for construction grants.
"We want to demonstrate that sustainable design can be cost-effective and embrace historical preservation," Harrison says.