The GreenZone project at Building Design + Construction’s Greenbuild International Conference and Expo has set an industry-leading example since its inception in 2008 for educating communities on the importance of going green and showcasing sustainable building through charitable work. In 2016, the project continued its mission by partnering with Compton YouthBuild (CYB) to plan the design and construction for their new education center.   
CYB provides educational and vocational opportunities to people ages 16-24 in southern California who are committed to creating sustainable futures for themselves, their families and their communities. In order to continue its services, CYB began plans for a new building that would house its education, workshops and training services – presenting the perfect opportunity for the 2016 GreenZone project. Led by architects from HDR Inc., plans were drawn up for a 14 x 45 foot prefabricated modular facility that would be featured at the Greenbuild Expo before finding its permanent home on the CYB campus. Designed to meet LEED standards, all building products were donated by major industry manufacturers and Greenbuild exhibitors to construct an innovative, functional installation that stressed the importance of sustainability.
“This project is a great demonstration of the triple bottom line of true sustainability,” said Paul Rizzo, architectural discipline lead at HDR Inc. “We placed equal importance on social equity and the economics of job creation, the use of sustainable materials and the achievement of overall resource conservation.”
From appliances and countertops to window shades and doors, the interior of the CYB education center is outfitted with donations from manufacturers looking to make a difference with sustainability-focused products. The exterior is where the building truly comes to life and represents the mission of the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo. Constructed out of Metal Sales’ Horizontal T16-E Wall Panels with a Valspar’ Fluropon® Pure coating in Dark Bronze and Fluropon Classic II in Silver, the exterior of the building emits a bold, steely aesthetic. The Metal Sales panels provide excellent durability, and the box-shaped ribs of varying depths offer a unique and modern allure to the center’s façade.
Fluropon Pure is the latest coating in Valspar’s Fluropon line, keeping material transparency and sustainability top of mind. Designed to meet stringent sustainability agendas and guidelines, Pure was selected for the new education center thanks to its solar-reflective pigments, Red List compliance and reduction of hazardous materials, which make it easier to meet LEED v4 and Living Building Challenge’s Declare Programs.
“Valspar has taken an important next step in reducing the use of hazardous materials in this essential coating that architects use to deliver durable and beautiful exterior metal building envelopes to our clients,” said Rizzo. “Our design was intended to deliver the message that the students of CYB and the community deserve the best 21st Century learning environment. The metal exterior skin with Valspar Pure coatings delivers this message with a collage of color and pattern that will also provide a durable high performance building envelope for decades to come.”
When the new CYB education center arrives to its long-term home, it will offer hundreds of students a building that exemplifies their hard work and determination. In 2015, 91 percent of CYB graduates received high school diplomas. Many more continue to receive invaluable instruction and career counseling and training. Thanks in small part to partners like Valspar and Metal Sales, the new education center from the 2016 GreenZone project offers students an opportunity to continue thriving and bettering their future in Compton.