San Diego has set a high-bar goal to transition to zero-net energy in all new county buildings. So, the county’s latest project, the Assessor, Recorder, County Clerk office in Santee needed to meet zero-net energy. Archive facilities are known for high energy usage, but C.W. Driver Cos. rose to the challenge, delivering the first zero-net archive facility in the country and paving the way for like projects in the future.

“With the archival piece of the project, there is a high energy usage,” Andy Feth, project executive at C.W. Driver, tells “The building needs to maintain a constant temperature and energy requirement, and it is a much bigger energy hog than a standard office building. It is really more about a whole building energy optimization. We are trying to fine tune the various pieces with the glazing and the amount of insolation.”

The project is part of a broader plan for the County to become more energy efficient, and while this was a particularly challenging project considering the energy usage of the property, this wasn’t C.W. Driver’s first zero-net energy office building for the County. “The County of San Diego and the Board of supervisors made a resolution that all new county buildings going forward would be zero-net energy, and this project is a continuation of that commitment,” Feth says. “This is our second zero-net energy building with the county, and we cut our teeth on that last one and learned what it took to achieve that designation.”

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

Kelsi Maree Borland

Kelsi Maree Borland is a freelance journalist and magazine writer based in Los Angeles, California. For more than 5 years, she has extensively reported on the commercial real estate industry, covering major deals across all commercial asset classes, investment strategy and capital markets trends, market commentary, economic trends and new technologies disrupting and revolutionizing the industry. Her work appears daily on and regularly in Real Estate Forum Magazine. As a magazine writer, she covers lifestyle and travel trends. Her work has appeared in Angeleno, Los Angeles Magazine, Travel and Leisure and more.

More from this author



Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join now!

  • Free unlimited access to's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2022 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.