« Back to Nominees

San Elijo Joint Powers Authority Operations Facility and Visitors Center

Orchid Icon  Orchid
  Public Architecture

RNT Architects provided comprehensive design services for the San Elijo Joint Powers Authority (SEJPA), beginning with a Preliminary Design Report through the ultimate construction of a new Headquarters facility. The final design:

  • Re-visioned the facility as a “Water Campus” to foster research and development of future water purification strategies.
  • Optimized efficiency for the day-to-day water treatment operations.
  • Provided space for future growth and operational needs.
  • Enhanced collaboration with the adjacent San Elijo Lagoon Nature Center.
  • Fostered educational opportunities with the community engagement.

The new 14,500 SF two-story building consists of a public lobby, board chambers, administrative offices, work and training areas for plant operators and mechanics, and locker room facilities.  Exterior enhancements include an entry plaza, parking, an outdoor lunch patio, a covered service area, landscaping, and site security fencing. The new facility consolidates all agency operational needs in one place while providing greater opportunities for public outreach and education.

The facility strengthens community connections by adding a regional multi-use trail, as well as 31 public parking spaces available for the adjacent Nature Center’s use. The increased public presence has enabled the SEJPA more engagement with the public to tell their story of water recycling and environmental stewardship.

2695 Manchester Avenue, Cardiff, CA 92007

Project Owner/Developer:
San Elijo Joint Powers Authority

Contact Name/Email:
Mike Thornton / Thornton@sejpa.org

Project Architect/Designer:
Roesling Nakamura Terada Architects, Inc. (RNT)

nomination photo nomination photo nomination photo nomination photo nomination photo nomination photo nomination photo


  1. Joe Mansfield

    I am impressed with San Elijo JPA’s vision to see the greater good this project could provide for the community. The added multi-use regional trail, safe passage and parking for the neighboring San Elijo Lagoon Nature Center give much greater recreational access this wonderful natural resource.

    • Julia Salzer

      Amazing building!!

  2. Adam Kaye

    Great job, San Elijo JPA and RNT! The impressive building and many community benefits that came with it are great additions to Encinitas!

  3. Adam Kaye

    Congrats to San Elijo Joint Powers Authority for Water Campus improvements that are attractive and include so many community benefits!

  4. Robert J Warren

    The improvements made at San Elijo are to be applauded. I first did some engineering work there in the late 1980’s helping to convert the plant to full secondary treatment. The advanced treatment no there along with creating the water campus is first rate.

  5. George Foote

    I am in this office often and love the views. The architecture is very calming, and I ride my bike on the trials. This place is great.

  6. Anthony Petrozzelli

    As a contract employee, I am very impressed with the San Elijo Joint Powers new office building. The architecture is very impressive and blends in beautifully with the scenic San Elijo Lagoon. Also, it provides additional parking to provide recreational access to San Elijo Lagoon for visitors. Inside the building its very spacious with plenty of natural light, which makes a day at work a very favorable and enjoyable experience. This new office building reflects the vision that San Elijo Joint Powers Authority of having water treatment services blending in with a clean, odor free, green environment.

  7. Trevor Wardell

    Its great to see a public works project designed and executed with such care. The new bike path has been really great as its promoted a more intimate and genuine connection with our local environment.

  8. anthony le

    Beautiful conference room ceiling & great wood screen design at curtainwall system

  9. Hector Ruiz

    The San Elijo Water Campus truly lives up to its name. A modern, well-designed facility that serves to educate by example, including optimal use of materials, space, capture of solar power, water conservation features, and stormwater runoff capture and reuse.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *