Building Upon a Community Steward's Legacy
Balfour Beatty served as construction manager for the City of Moorpark to build the Ruben Castro Human Services Center located in Moorpark, Calif. The 25,000-square-foot facility provides medical care and social services to low- and moderate-income residents.
The two-building center houses a medical clinic operated Ventura County Medical Center and a separate structure for the County of Ventura Human Services Agency and several non-profit social services agencies including Catholic Charities, First 5 Ventura County-Moorpark/Simi Valley Neighborhood For Learning, and Interface Children and Family Services. These agencies provide needed services including nutrition, mental health care and family strengthening programs to low-income residents in the Moorpark community and east Ventura County. The center is named for the late Moorpark resident Ruben Castro, renowned for his service to the community and support of migrant workers.
The Center provides the space where all of Moorpark’s various human services organizations are located one centralized location—a dream of Ruben Castro’s during his decades of work on behalf of local residents.
Balfour Beatty implemented sustainable construction practices and incorporated energy savings materials such as: low-e window glazing, high-efficiency HVAC systems, energy saving lighting fixtures and drought-tolerant plantings.
Preserving the Memory of the Facility’s Namesake
It’s hard to miss the intricately carved, 11-foot limestone sculpture that sits in the entrance of the human services center. The artist behind the beautiful creation is John Fisher, who was hired to by the City to create a piece that would honor his legacy for generations to come.
What was once a 26,000-solid block of limestone, now stands tall with 10 human figures that represent community members of various ages and ethnicities, and several animals. One of the sculpture's human figures is Ruben Castro himself.
It was important that the sculpture finish at the same time the building finished. The only way to do accomplish this task was to provide a safe working environment for the artist to do his work. Despite being located in close proximity to an area where the height of construction activity was occurring, the Balfour Beatty project team created a “safe zone” so that Mr. Fisher could do his work and made the appropriate accommodations to “build around” him.
"We are one family" is engraved on the base of the sculpture—and that’s the thinking behind the approach that the Balfour Beatty team took to accomplish our shared goal of bringing the owner’s vision of preserving a legacy to life.