MVE Institutional designed the Downtown Educational Complex in Oakland, Calif., to serve as an educational facility, community center, and grid-neutral green building. The 123,000-sf complex, now under construction on a 5.5-acre site in the city’s Lake Merritt neighborhood, will be built in two phases, the first expected to be completed in spring 2012 and the second in fall 2014. The finished project will house a child development center for 168 students, the 360-student La Escuelita K-5 elementary school, and the 180-student MetWest High School. Each school will have its own entry but all will share a great room (with a cafeteria, gymnasium, and multipurpose auditorium), playing field, and community garden. The surrounding community will have access to a health clinic and a media center inside the complex. A photovoltaic array will be installed on the cool roof. Passive cooling towers, rainwater collection, operable windows, Energy Star appliances, and a building management system round out the green features.