How to Pass a General Obligation Bond – Video!

Many school districts in California are taking the opportunity to engage their community in General Obligation  Bonds (GO bonds) to obtain the additional funding needed to update their facilities. BCA utilizes a unique collaborative step-by-step process to update a school district’s master plan in order to secure the extra resources provided by GO bonds. Check out this video to learn more about BCA’s process: ELC_Version2_DM

Utilizing Bond Measures to Improve a Community: How BCA Architects is Helping School Districts Leverage Their Assets and Find “Additional” Money

When it comes time for a school district to renovate its facilities and upgrade its pedagogic infrastructure, not all funding sources are apparent nor do all administrators have the insider knowledge to maneuver through complicated processes and get their hands on the money. Recently, however, a number of school districts throughout California have taken the advice of BCA Architects and leveraged additional dollars to turn their expectations of just a simple modernization into a spectacular state-of-the-art enhancement of their facilities.

BCA Architects has effectively boosted school funds for more than six of the school districts they have master-planned over the past year, proving the firm to be one of the most fiscally and efficiently imaginative architectural groups in the field of education. BCA has consistently surpassed the basic needs of school districts and generated impressive funding models through its holistic approach to design, using general obligation bond eligibility, hardship funding, and effective asset management of school-owned real estate to raise district budgets. More importantly, by carrying some of the financial planning burden necessary to increase school improvement revenues, BCA lets the educators focus on educating their Districts’ students while leaving a considerable amount of the complex fund-raising process to the firm.  This is extremely beneficial to our smaller sized school districts.

Perhaps one of the most creative solutions the firm has devised to date can be seen in its approach to what was originally intended to be a modernization project for two schools in the Bayshore Elementary School District. During one of the Pivot Learning Partners’ Executive Leadership Center (ELC) programs, one of BCA’s Superintendents in Residence, Edwin Diaz, connected with Bayshore’s, Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Audra Pittman, who was looking to capitalize on Prop 39 energy funds to implement a Facilities Master Plan for the district.  However, after meeting with Paul Bunton, AIA, CEO of BCA Architects, and learning that the school district had a bonding capacity for a $6,000,000 General Obligation Bond, which if passed, would allow the district to make much more significant upgrades to the two schools within their district, Dr. Pittman decided to present this option to her Board of Trustees.  Subsequently, the Governing Board placed a bond measure on the June 2014 ballot which successfully passed with 82% of the community supporting the bond measure.

During the master planning process, BCA studied the current grade level configurations of the Districts two schools.  Bayshore Elementary School with a configuration of TK-4th grades, had an enrollment of 203 students while Robertson Intermediate School with a configuration of 5-8th grades, had an enrollment of 173 students.  Both schools were significantly underutilized.  Evaluating the demographic study of the District, enrollment was anticipated to continue to decline through the end of 2020. Given that neither school has had any significant modernization in their 50+ year life spans, the $6 million bond measure would only scratch the surface in being able to effectively bring these facilities into 21st century learning environments, BCA began to study alternatives.  At the same time, Dr. Pittman had an epiphany about how to consolidate their facilities and provide better facilities for her District.  Working together with their client, BCA Architects developed a series of options that included the consolidation of the Districts two underutilized schools into one TK-8 facility – with this option, the District would demolish both aging facilities, sell one of their two sites, and construct a new TK-8 21st century learning environment for the District.

After presenting their ideas to the Governing Board, BCA was authorized to embark on a feasibility study that ultimately would bring back a recommendation to develop the Robertson site as a 71 unit residential subdivision and construct a new 600 student TK-8 facility on the Bayshore site.  The estimated revenue from the sale of Robertson coupled with the Districts Bond Measure would generate enough funds to design and construct a new 2-story $25 million state of the art educational facility.  In addition, should State funding eligibility become available after a pending 2016 Bond Measure, the District will have up to approximately $4 million in additional funding that can be put into endowments for teachers salaries, technology refresh funding, maintenance and operations funds, and other discretionary uses.

Dr. Pittman commented about the Board adopted facilities master plan stating that “The need is there, and the students and staff of our District deserve the very best. We have a strong community, with great students and families, and a dedicated staff.  If we are going to compete in our growing global economy, we need to provide only the best for our students, families, staff, and community! By shifting to a brand new TK-8 facility, the best is what our community will get.”  She further commented “BCA Architects are definitely out of the box thinkers in today’s educational arena.  They go beyond providing basic architectural services for their clients through their unique understanding of where education is today in our society, and the need to find creative solutions and supplemental funding to be able to provide the best 21st century learning environments for students.  They are an outstanding partner to our District.”.

Paul Bunton, AIA, commented, “It only makes sense to consolidate the Districts assets and provide one incredible educational facility for the community.  Modernizing the Districts 50 year old facilities with a $6 million bond measure would be equivalent to putting a Band-Aid on them and wouldn’t begin to provide the 21st century learning environments needed to meet the required common core standards.  In addition the operational savings of running two schools versus one will reduce the demand on the District’s general fund through consolidation of staffing, energy savings, and maintenance reductions, while providing a stronger pedagogical platform for the District”.

Thinking holistically, BCA’s resourceful master planning process guides their districts’ through the myriad of decisions needed to bring a thought based plan to fruition.  Their understanding of both the educational process and school funding along with their unstoppable will to provide the very best educational environments makes them a valuable partner to School Districts throughout the State of California.

BCA Architects to Open New State-of-the-Art Office in Downtown Sacramento


Contact: Nikolas Bunton



Extending Progressive Architecture to the Northern California Region

BCA Architects to Open New State-of-the-Art Office in Downtown Sacramento


Sacramento, CA (June 3, 2015) — In an effort to expand their presence in the Northern California region, BCA Architects is opening a full-fledged office in the heart of downtown Sacramento. The new office, slated to open in August, will be on the 20th floor of the skyscraper at 980 9th Street looking out westward, toward the Sacramento River, Tower Bridge, and the site for the new Entertainment and Sports Center.

By extending the firm’s geographical outreach up the coast, BCA Architects is further establishing its commitment to serving Northern and Central California and to bringing its client-focused values to those regions. Perhaps foremost, the firm will be much more accessible to the clientele in the area, making communication and partnership easier and more effective. The new office is also signal of BCA’s depth of leadership and its capacity to work in a diverse sphere of market sectors ranging from educational to assisted living, commercial to civic.

As BCA expands northward so will its contemporary design aesthetics, both in terms of the firm’s distinctive architectural style and its ability to create environmentally sustainable and economically resourceful structures. This approach is aptly mirrored in the design of BCA’s Sacramento office, which is aesthetically very modern and thought-provoking and yet responsive to what people are asking for in terms of the efficiency and practicality of a work environment. The design will combine BCA’s modernist flair, signature materials and color scheme with modular desks, tables and chairs to create a visually appealing yet flexible and pragmatic space. Made up of mostly recyclable materials and utilizing auto-dimming lights, the office will be environmentally friendly and highly sustainable in nature.

As thought leaders in 21st century workplace and educational design, the firm is dedicated to advancing the architectural integrity and efficacy of such environments by emphasizing collaboration, technology, sustainability, and comfort. Indicative of this, BCA’s Sacramento office will reflect those progressive architectural methods and aesthetics by incorporating next generation workplace design into the new space.

“What we’re trying to do is to create a more 21st century office environment that integrates flexibility and openness while also supporting people’s ability to find individual comfort in their workspaces,” says Brian P. Whitmore, AIA, NCARB, LEED®AP, President of BCA. “We want it to have a completely open and collective feel, so we’ve got benching style work stations that are very low and open, maximizing the view in the space and thereby harboring collaboration. At the same time we’ll have private offices which will create some spaces for conversation and smaller meetings, as well as a conference space for even more engaging collaboration. Lastly, we’ve created a comfort zone: soft seating, a bar area, kitchenette, video monitor, and others amenities that make for a more ergonomic work environment. We want the new office to showcase what we’re doing with modern workplace design.”

The team at BCA Architects could not be more excited to be taking root in Sacramento, particularly in a space so representative of its design approach. And as a firm with projects ranging from Orange County to the northernmost edges of California, what could be more appropriate than establishing a legitimate branch in the state’s capital city.


BCA Architects partners with clients in a mission to achieve excellence in design. Since 1989, BCA strives to strengthen communities through projects built whether it’s to design, to help define partnerships, to locate financing, to save energy or to present alternate delivery methods. BCA goes above and beyond the task at hand to ensure their clients succeed. For more information, visit:


BCA Selected to Design the New Cañada Kinesiology and Human Performance Center

A Sustainable Fusion of Commercial and Educational Design:

BCA Architects Selected to Design the Cañada Kinesiology and Human Performance Center


Redwood City, CA (April 9, 2015) – As part of the San Mateo County Community College School District’s efforts to invigorate their campus facilities, BCA Architects has been selected to design a new $43,000,000 high quality health club on the Cañada Community College campus: the Cañada Kinesiology and Human Performance Center.

The new 82,000 square foot facility is both commercial and educational in nature, aptly showcasing BCA’s expertise in both market sectors. The facility center will not only benefit Cañada’s student population, but also the surrounding community as a whole. While the multipurpose gymnasium, indoor basketball court, and swimming pools will be accessible to the student population for kinesiology education and sports, the fitness center portion of the building – including cardio and weightlifting machines, locker rooms, dance, yoga, flex studios, and childcare – will be open to the general public for private membership. Allowing community members to use the health club for a fee adds a resourceful and lucrative element to the facility by creating a source of additional revenue for the college.

“Fitness is such a huge deal right now in schools. I think this building is going to be a game-changer when it comes to how fitness facilities are designed on college campuses in the future, and I don’t mean just in California but throughout the United States,” says the President of BCA Architects, Brian P. Whitmore, AIA, NCARB, LEED®AP. “There are a couple of things this building does uniquely that make me feel this way. First, it offers a great partnership between public and private entities which will benefit the students and athletes attending the college, as well as generate revenue to assist the college in its financial goals. We’ve created a very open and inviting space that engages all of the different constituents within the design.”

One of the vital elements of BCA’s design is sustainability. The facility will implement environmentally efficient materials and current trends in sustainable architecture. It is targeted to meet LEED® GOLD certification. This includes strategies for capture and re-use of grey water, solar panels, natural ventilation, maximization of views and thermal comfort/control of the fitness and gymnasium areas. Unlike the former center – an almost windowless block structure built in the 1960s – the new facility is structured around tapered glass paneling and a central spine of corten steel running down the middle to facilitate circulation. Utilizing glass as the primary material allows the building to receive an abundance of energy-saving natural light and opens up the fabulous views of the site’s surrounding valley.

“The glass walls and open design integrate the building into the campus,” says Whitmore. “Fitness is incorporated into the lifestyle of the campus; it’s not behind closed doors and solid walls, its open so you can actually see it. Someone working out can see the students walking back and forth to class, and someone walking back and forth from class can look up and view the people working out — so there’s this instant connection between fitness and academics as part of a healthy lifestyle.”

The San Mateo County Community College District is trying to make this a world class facility, not only in the type of equipment and technology integrated in the space but also in its design, which means maximizing the views, making it feel open and welcoming, and integrating it into the campus in a way that makes it feel unified and synergistic.

“I’m not looking to just build a rectilinear building, I’m looking at something that’s really going to stand out and be a kind of beacon for this institution, if not for the county,” commented Ron Galatolo, Chancellor of SMCCCD. “BCA Architects have really been instrumental in allowing us to achieve that vision and that dream because they all think outside of the box – they are the consummate out-of-the-box thinkers. They see themselves as partners, not only with the owner but also with the builder, and in doing so it makes the design and building process almost seamless. We owe BCA a great deal of gratitude because they’ve been there with us from the very beginning and we had a very large vision that surrounded about half a billion dollars in construction, and without them being there for us I’m sure we would not have accomplished it to the level we’ve done so far.”

The Cañada Kinesiology and Human Performance Center, slated to open in late spring 2017, is a truly distinctive structure that will set the precedent for future fitness facilities, not only in terms of its sustainable and holistic design but also for the resourceful business model it incorporates.


BCA Architects partners with clients in a mission to achieve excellence in design. Since 1989, BCA strives to strengthen communities through projects built whether it’s to design, to help define partnerships, to locate financing, to save energy or to present alternate delivery methods. BCA goes above and beyond the task at hand to ensure their clients succeed. For more information, visit: