Koll Airport Professional Center
17862 Fitch, Irvine, CA

The Vision

The recently renovated Koll Airport Professional Center in Irvine, CA received a LEED Silver Certificate in 2009 from the U.S. Green Building Council for Core and Shell. In fact, the building is considered one of the nation's very first LEED-certified office condominiums. The remarkable transformation of a run-down, two-story, 63,225 square-foot office and warehouse into an eye-catching, single story, energy-efficient, 40,000 square foot office building is the subject of much admiration in Southern California. After removing the second story from the original building, the architects split the lower level into two almost completely separated buildings, added more windows for better daylighting and created two new inviting entryways that provide access to a wide variety of office spaces.

The Airolite Look...

To unify the two new first floor buildings, and to maximize natural lighting, a dramatic canopy of 48 Airolite aluminum sun controls was designed and suspended over an employee plaza between the two wings. Each sun control is ten inches wide and over nine feet long. The sun controls were finished in clear anodize to reflect light into the offices while creating interesting patterns of sunlight and shade for employees and visitors who enjoy the outdoor plaza area during the day. The controls are especially dramatic in the evening when they emit a soft orange glow from exterior security lighting and the renowned California sunset. Four decorative exterior screens of Airolite louvers finished in Silversmith pearlescent Kynar® coating also were installed. The screens hide rooftop equipment and project nearly five feet above the first floor adding further interest and eye appeal to the office center.

That Works

The striking Airolite sun shade canopy clearly communicates to visitors the primary entrances into all offices within the building. The sunshades help reduce energy costs by cutting the sun's penetrating heat while still supplementing the natural light the architect and developer wanted to achieve within the building. Airolite sunshades and louvers helped contribute to the accumulation of LEED credits by:

  • improving energy efficiency,
  • using extruded aluminum components generally consisting of 50% preconsumer material by weight, and
  • being coated at a factory that emits zero volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Installing the equipment screens on top of the building was made easier by fabricating them as single-unit, pre-assembled louver panels at the factory.
Installing the equipment screens on top of the building was made easier by fabricating them as single-unit, pre-assembled louver panels at the factory.

The owner of the building is very pleased with both the energy efficiency and increased business value they achieved on this project. "The Koll Airport Professional Center is an example of how we can creatively develop a sustainable, high performance building that, as a result of the green building features incorporated into the design, will operate at a lower cost to tenants," said Scott Meserve, development manager for The Koll Company. "While environmentally responsible development has more up-front costs, it is simply the right thing to do for our tenants and the environment."


  • Architects:

    LPA, Inc., Irvine, CA

  • General Contractor:

    Provance Roofing Services, Murrietta, CA