Carbon Neutral Design Studio at Cal Poly Pomona Engages Students and Architects to Work Together to Rebuild Homes Destroyed by 2007 Wildfires with support of NCARB Grant

Sponsored by a 2010 NCARB Grant, a student-led effort is underway at Cal Poly Pomona to design and build two sustainable prototype homes that will replace structures that were destroyed by wildfires in 2007. Referred to as the Pamo Valley Project, the effort provides students with an exceptional opportunity to engage in a co-lectured program shared between faculty and non-faculty practitioners.

Owned by the City of San Diego and leased to ranchers who maintain the land, these homes qualified for emergency assistance funds from FEMA. Rather than using the funds to purchase FEMA trailers, the City of San Diego has teamed with Cal Poly Pomona’s Department of Architecture and HMC Architects to engage students to design two low-cost structures for the site. The Pamo Valley Leadership is comprised of HMC Architects’ Eric Carbonnier, AIA as Project Manager, City liaison Mark Corcoran as Project Coordinator, and Pablo La Roche instructing the Carbon Neutral Design Studio at Cal Poly Pomona. Students are working on the homes through a design studio in the winter and a sustainable design seminar in the Spring, both led by Dr. Pablo La Roche, followed by a paid internship and mentoring at HMC Architects to develop construction documents. Construction on the homes is set to commence Fall 2011, with post-occupancy evaluations to follow in 2012.

The two student designed winning projects being constructed: Left: MOD5 house. Right: P+Dzn

Grant info:NCARB Grant
Project info: (






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