San Diego Mesa College and C.W. Driver Companies recently broke ground for construction of a $12.8 million fine arts building on the school’s Clairemont campus.

The four-story, 26,500 square-foot building will be on the site of the former I-300 building. It will include classrooms and studios for drawing, painting, photography, sculpting and ceramics and is slated to be finished in summer 2018.

The first floor will contain the Mesa College Art Gallery and an art history classroom.

Large, open studio classrooms for drawing, digital graphics and sculpture will be on the second and third floors, and the fourth floor will have ceramics and painting studios.

Shop spaces will be adjacent to the studios and classrooms to support the shared use of art equipment, materials and other resources.

The building will feature simple industrial finishes, open floor plans and high ceilings. New sidewalks and walkways, curb and gutter improvements and new street access will be included in the project.

“This building remodel has been carefully designed to both encourage and highlight creativity, and with its use we look forward to supporting the success of our art students and programs,” said Leslie Shimazaki, dean of arts and languages.

C.W. Driver is working with HGW Architects on the project, which is designed to achieve LEED Silver certification.

With offices in San Diego, Carlsbad, Los Angeles, Irvine, Rancho Cucamonga, Anaheim and San Jose, C.W Driver Companies provides general contracting, construction management and design-build services to companies across California.