NOVATO, CA—At its monthly meeting on July 18, the College of Marin (COM) Board of Trustees unanimously awarded Blach Construction Company (Blach) with a $24.1 million design-build project at its Indian Valley Campus. The new, long-awaited Miwok Center will support wellness, kinesiology, aquatics, and athletics programs for students and the surrounding community. Funding for the project is made possible by the voter-approved Marin Community College District Bond Measure B. Blach Construction is a member of AGC of California.
The new Miwok Center will establish a vibrant hub for COM’s 333-acre Indian Valley Campus. Enhancing the campus and generating greater awareness for the College as a whole, it will attract students interested in pursuing courses in physical education, wellness, and kinesiology. Additionally, it will benefit the public at-large by offering much sought-after access to a comprehensive health and wellness facility.
“We are constantly learning about new research on well-being which causes us to rethink how we can incorporate opportunities for our students, faculty, staff, and the community to instill healthy habits,” said Dr. David Wain Coon, COM superintendent/president. “I envision this as a center where both mind and body can be developed.”
Complete with an Olympic-sized swimming pool and a lap pool, the new Miwok Center will complement its idyllic setting on the Indian Valley Campus. The state-of-the-art building will house a full gymnasium and a fitness center with areas for cardio equipment, weights, and group fitness. Locker rooms, classrooms, offices, a lobby, and space for storage will surround the gymnasium and fitness center. The adjacent, outdoor pools will be used for COM and community aquatics classes, teams, meets, and camps, as well as for recreational purposes.
Award-winning Blach Construction, along with renown, long-time partner ELS Architecture and Urban Design, will erect the new Miwok Center. Using Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards, it has the potential to earn zero net energy (ZNE) consumption, where the total amount of energy used by the building on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created on the site.
“It was a highly competitive selection process, but in the end, Blach + ELS’ innovative proposal fully supports our overall vision of the project,” said Greg Nelson, vice president of finance and college operations. “From the beautiful architectural design to sustainability and total cost of ownership, it was obvious they were the right choice. Their attention to quality and collaborative, service-based approach—coupled with an unprecedented safety record—will undoubtedly result in a facility that is built well and serves College of Marin and the Indian Valley Campus community for years to come.”
Blach and ELS Architecture and Urban Design principals have a successful history of partnering on college and university sports, recreation, and aquatic projects. Their most current design-build construction contract includes the $77M Kinesiology and Wellness Aquatic Center at Cañada College.
“We are honored to have been selected by College of Marin to transform their Indian Valley Campus with a facility that ultimately enables them to enhance their overall offerings,” said Mike Blach, president and CEO of Blach Construction. “Equally as such, we’re excited to partner with ELS again and bring to life another groundbreaking, much-desired wellness and aquatic center that optimizes building performance for our health and our environment.”
The design of the new Miwok Center is currently under review. Groundbreaking is slated for summer 2018 and construction is anticipated to be complete by summer 2020.