SVA Architects Honored for California School Projects

By Eric Althoff

SANTA ANA, Calif.—Southern California design firm SVA Architects, founded in 2003, has been honored with four 2022 Gold Nugget Awards of Merit, three of them for the architect’s work in the educational sector in the Golden State.  The Gold Nuggets, now in its 59th year, recognizes outstanding architectural design and planning achievements.

Their 2022 educational awards include one for the Serramonte Del Rey Faculty & Staff Housing in Daly City in the category of Best Student or Faculty Housing.  Working with design-build partner J.H. Fitzmaurice, SVA added additional residences at affordable rates for staff.

SVA also picked up the award for Best Rehabilitation Project thanks to their work on South Pasadena Middle School in South Pasadena, where the architect redesigned the school’s Old Gymnasium to give it new life as the Arts Building.  SVA’s efforts allowed the existing Romanesque Mediterranean exterior motif to be maintained while the interior was reworked to become a performance space.

In addition, SVA’s renovation work at The Barn at University of California, Riverside took home the award for Best Special Use Project.  The Barn is among the oldest structures at the campus, having been built as horse stables in 1917—nearly 40 years before the school itself was even founded.  The Barn later served as a student cafeteria and performance venue, and the renovation will allow it to continue serving UCR for decades to come.

This marks the eighth consecutive year the firm has won one or more Gold Nuggets.

“These award-winning projects are the result of a synergy between our team, and the developers, contractors, project managers, and local community members,” said

Ernesto M. Vasquez, CEO of SVA Architects.  “They demonstrate that the best results are achieved when we ask questions, listen, engage, and collaborate to make healthy, vibrant communities.”

Added Robert Simons, SVA’s president: “It’s very rewarding for us to have these projects recognized with Gold Nugget Awards of Merit.  We’d like to thank the judges for honoring these projects and recognizing the value and enrichment they bring to our communities.”