Citing nearly a half million dollars lost to repairs, the university is taking action against an architectural firm in Los Angeles.

A lawsuit was filed on Jan. 22 against Antoine Predock Architectural Co. for inadequate design in the heating, venting and air conditioning structures in the Student Affairs and Administrative Services Building, according to Christine Haas, the attorney representing UCSB.

The system does not deliver the airflow needed, making it ineffective at controlling the building’s temperature. Parts of the ventilation also started vibrating in specific places in the building, causing floors and walls to shake and making employees motion sick, Dean of Students Yonie Harris said.

Hiring a contractor to correct the mishaps and redoing the ventilation system and air conditioning will cost the university an estimated $500,000, Haas said. The lawsuit is asking compensation for this loss.

SAASB was completed in the winter of 1996 and has had problems from the beginning.

“Not too long after the building was occupied, we noticed vent problems,” said Jack Wolever, director of Design and Construction Services at UCSB.

Repairs for the SAASB, the first and only building designed by Predock at UCSB, have been continuous, and according to Wolever, some work remains to be done.

The trial date will not be set for another three to six months. Haas said it is a simple lawsuit, and if Santa Barbara courts agree, trial will end within a year.

“It is my sincere hope that this matter is fairly and expeditiously resolved,” Chancellor Henry Yang said.

Antoine Predock Architectural Co. could not be reached for comment.

-Alex Sohn