The Sonoma County Fleet Maintenance and Soils Testing Lab Building is located prominently on the corner of the Redwood Highway, or 101 North, and Bicentennial Way in Santa Rosa, California and serves two county user groups: The General Services Fleet Operation Division and Transportation and Public Works Materials Lab. The facility provides light equipment service for the county’s vehicular fleet, including parts storage and administration offices and a soils lab for testing pavements and building materials. Both functions share restroom/locker areas and site facilities.
Our design aligns with the client’s vision for leadership in sustainability and celebrates the elements of a light industrial facility by highlighting select expressions of its structure, such as the corrugated metal panels used throughout the project and the green that calls out the structural beams of the building. The facility’s two main components – the vehicle service area and the combined office/lab area – are expressed in the architecture as volumes with different height and different cladding. The office/lab building includes a welcoming green canopy that not only covers the entrances and shades the south-facing windows, but also connects the distinct functions as it wraps around the corner of the building. This design element is echoed above the roll-up doors in the service building to provide weather protection.
The 21,000-SF facility also demonstrates multiple sustainable features. The high albedo roof is fully reflective and designed to receive solar panel arrays in the future. All occupied spaces of the building are fully insulated; the weather-protected vehicle service area uses low temperature radiant heating for maximum efficiency with low energy use. The lab area includes automatic shutter louvers for make-up air when the high-capacity hood fans are in use. Due to the size of the county’s fleet, the site accommodates many parking spaces, 20 of which are electric charging stations for the county’s 49 electric vehicles. All water runoff from the paved area and the building roof is directed to a bio-swale, which surrounds the entire site. The planting areas use drought resistant plants and trees to minimize water usage.