C.W. Driver Companies, a legacy builder celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, today announced the completion of the new $15.9 million San Diego Mesa College Fine Arts Building – a four-story, 26,500-square-foot facility that unites the program’s departments into a single modernized building. The new space facilitates experiential teaching and collaboration, enhancing the department’s ability to provide a comprehensive fine arts education program and hands-on experience for students.

Located at 7250 Mesa College Drive on the site of the former I-300 building, the new integrated building provides a hub for the college’s photography, digital graphics, drawing, painting, ceramics and sculpting classes and studios.

“We were proud to partner with Mesa College to bring to life its vision of a unified environment that inspires creative community on campus,” said Brandon Silveira, project manager at C.W. Driver Companies. “The design incorporates large, open studio classrooms that allow for maximum flexibility, and provides the resources and education its fine arts students need to succeed as the college’s programs continue to grow and thrive.”

As one of the largest and most successful of California’s 114 community colleges, and the largest in the San Diego Community College District, Mesa College serves 24,000 students. Through its annual contractor recognition program, San Diego Community College District honored C.W. Driver Companies for its exemplary small business outreach and engagement practices throughout the project duration.

C.W. Driver Companies partnered with architecture firm Hanna Gabriel Wells on the project. The building is designed to obtain LEED® Silver certification as a result of reusing existing structures, optimizing energy performance, using low-emitting materials and other energy-efficient measures. In addition to the new fine arts center, the project involved construction of a new exterior sidewalk and walkway, curb and gutter improvements and new street access on the North and South sides.

“It has been such a joy seeing this building come to life for our more than 1,500 fine arts students already taking classes in the building,” said Dr. Pamela Luster, president of Mesa College. “The Fine Arts Building beautifully showcases our program and the incredible art that is being created every day by our students.”

The new fine arts facility was funded by the $1.55 billion Proposition S and N construction bond program, which funds new instructional and career training facilities, major renovations and campus-wide infrastructure projects at Mesa, City and Miramar colleges as well as six continuing education campuses throughout San Diego.

In addition to Silveira, C.W. Driver Companies team members on the project included Mike McConkey, senior superintendent; Dan Howell, superintendent; Gilbert Agundez, assistant superintendent; Kenny Kimbrough, project engineer; Ricka Iwatsu, chief estimator; Eric Schultz, project manager and Hank Withaar, vice president of operations.

The Mesa College Fine Arts Building adds to C.W. Driver Companies’ robust higher education portfolio. Recent work includes Chapman University’s Keck Center for Science and Engineering; Cal Poly Pomona’s Student Services Building; Vanguard University’s Student Center; California State University San Bernardino’s Student Housing & Dining Commons and Biola University’s Center for Science, Technology & Health.


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