American AgCredit Agricultural Center & Headquarters
Santa Rosa, Calif.             
Best Project

Owner: American AgCredit
Lead Design Firm: TLCD Architecture
General Contractor: Jim Murphy & Associates
Civil Engineer: Breije & Race
Structural Engineer: ZFA Structural Engineers
MEP Engineer:  TEP Engineering

American AgCredit’s new $55.5-million headquarters and agricultural center provides an open, flexible environment for employees and tenants. Two building structures curve around an oval-shaped courtyard. Bridges, walkways and a roof deck encourage people to explore. The 120,000-sq-ft facility houses the company’s national headquarters, a regional branch office and 20,000 sq ft of tenant space.

Automated sun shading and daylight harvesting help light the workspaces, and a raised floor system improves air quality and energy efficiency. Private offices and workspaces can be added or changed as the Santa Rosa company continues to add teams and departments.

American AgCredit’s construction process was equally flexible, led by a design partnership between the contractor, architect and company. This collaboration, along with advanced design technology, allowed the team to meet its aggressive 18-month construction schedule. To select the building’s design-build team, the company paired prequalified architects and general contractors and asked them to present as a team, says Floyd Ridenhour, chief specialty officer at American AgCredit. TLCD Architecture and Jim Murphy & Associates were paired together and ultimately selected.

 “TLCD and JMA were collaborating even before the final design for the integrated building was completed,” Ridenhour says.

This collaboration and advanced design technology allowed the team to detect conflicts early on and work out solutions without impacts to the schedule. The three sections of the 30-ton air-conditioning unit, for example, were originally designed to be set on the third floor by crane, before the roof was finished. Instead, the units were set through the wall and rolled into place. This allowed the roof to be completed early and in time for the rainy season.

Related Article: Communities Are the Real Winners