Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Cost of Building Green - Part III

The end of a sustainable building’s design and construction phase is the beginning of the next – maximizing the building’s energy performance.

Parts I and II of this three-part series addressed Budgeting Green Building Construction Costs and Performing Life Cycle Costing (LCC) of the alternative building system energy savings.

The following is a case study outlining Step III of the process – monitoring green building performance.

Gettysburg Museum and Visitor Center Gettysburg, PA
The Gettysburg Museum and Visitor Center has been in operation since 2008. Kinsley Construction, the Construction Manager for the project, participated in the three-step Building Green Best Practices.

Step I – The Design/Construction team budgeted the sustainable systems and determined the LEED Gold initial design & construction costs added 4% to the budget.

Step II – The team performed energy modeling and Life Cycle Costing, comparing a central hot water and chilled water system to an alternative geothermal heat pump system. The analysis determined the geothermal system yielded a seven year payback.

Step III – The current building’s energy savings are being generated from the sustainable geothermal system. The Museum and Visitor Center’s trained facility operations staff monitors the building’s performance, visitor occupancy and utility consumption daily. The installation of the Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) on the buildings Air Handling Units (AHU) have generated energy saving paybacks of less than one year. Efficient management of the building’s lighting systems and connected loads and installing VFDs for major equipment have yielded an additional 34% annual electrical savings since 2008.
Fieldside Commons Office Campus in Aberdeen, MD

Also, Kinsley has recently completed Fieldside Commons Office Campus in Aberdeen, MD as an energy performance prototype. The actual performance of the building’s energy systems, usage, occupancy and weather will be measured, monitored and compared to the calibrated energy model to determine if the building is performing according to the planned return on the investment.

Kinsley offers the expertise and tools to assist owners in the three-step decision making process by determining sustainable construction costs, performing Life Cycle Costing of sustainable alternatives, and monitoring green building performance for the most cost effective building project.