You don’t often go out on a Saturday morning in January and think to yourself, “Did I need to put sunscreen on this morning?” But that’s what I found myself doing a couple Saturday’s ago with a crew of folks from the AIA Redwood Empire, including four from TLCD Architecture; Nick Diggins, Peter Levelle, Ron Starkey (Marina‘s husband), and myself. We spent the better part of that Saturday working on the second of five houses to be built at the Woodland Hills project in Cotati for Habitat for Humanity of Sonoma County. We were split into two groups, one crew building a wood fence and the other crew placing sand and pavers for the driveway. I think I speak for the whole group when I say we put in a lot of hard work, and we also had a lot of fun that day. It’s very rewarding at the end of the day to see the fruits of your labor in something as beautiful as a rustic driveway of pavers, or a fresh wood fence. It’s even more rewarding to know that your labor has helped provide a home for a deserving family in your community.
I was thrilled to be at the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Family Justice Center Sonoma County yesterday with my team-mates Mark, Dennis and Leslie. It was quite a turn-out with lots of folks who had a hand in the project at various stages and quite a number of our Sonoma County political representatives. The high point for me was seeing the end result of a project that started with sketching out the vision of the Site Committee in charette sessions in early 2010. Those sketches morphed their way into 3D drawings of the space, which we fine-tuned and fitted out with color, material and lighting solutions. The result is an amazing facility that provides a warm, welcoming and safe environment for victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and elder abuse. My favorite room in the project is “The Nest” which lies in the exact center of the building. The oval shape, dome ceiling and soft lighting represent the vision of the service providers and community based organizations that want victims in our community to know that people care enough to provide a special place for them as they journey through a challenging time in life. To read more about the project check out the recent article in the Press Democrat.