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SBIC Honors 2012 Beyond Green™ High-Performance Building Award Winners

Thursday, January 17, 2013  
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The National Institute of Building Sciences Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC) recognized the winners of the 2012 Beyond Green™High-Performance Building Awards at a luncheon held in their honor last Thursday, January 10, during Building Innovation 2013—The National Institute of Building Sciences Annual Conference and Expo.

The Beyond Green™ Awards recognize those initiatives that shape, inform and catalyze the high-performance building market, as well as the real-world application of high-performance design and construction practices. The annual awards program is open to all who apply.

Category A: High-Performance Buildings

In Category A: High-Performance Buildings, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Seattle District Headquarters won the Honor Award – First Place for High-Performance Buildings.

The result of funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), this U.S. General Services Administration project transformed a brownfield industrial warehouse site into the Corps of Engineers’ Seattle Headquarters. The building had to be designed to comply with numerous requirements, including sustainability and anti-terrorism standards. The project made extensive use of building information modeling (BIM) and incorporated an incentive compensation structure to encourage meeting of performance targets. The 200,000 square foot facility is anticipated to be in the top 1% of U.S. buildings for energy performance and should exceed all high-performance building requirements outlined in ARRA.

"The twin challenges of making a high-performance building and a secure federal facility are met elegantly and efficiently, to the significant benefit of the client and the public,” said SBIC Jury Member and Curator of the National Building Museum Susan Piedmont-Palladino. "With its phase-change materials, an interesting and innovative combination of foundation piles, and geothermal, reclaimed timber and unique chilled ‘sails,’ the building testifies to the tight collaboration and coordination of architecture, structural, MEP [mechanical, electrical, plumbing] and interiors, resulting in an impressive integration of systems across conventional boundaries. Most important is that these strategies are directly part of the inhabitant's experience, and communicate an important narrative to those who work there about the organization’s values. From its site strategy of reclamation to the design of its collaborative workspaces, the Army Corps Seattle Headquarters represents the best of design leadership.”

The George D. Aiken Center at The University of Vermont won the Award of Merit for Distinction in High-Performance Buildings.

The Aiken Center demonstrates the possibilities to transform an existing building to meet current needs. Submitted by Maclay Architects, who led the project team, this building, a renovation with a $13 million project cost, serves as the home for the Rubenstein School for the Environment and Natural Resources. This net-zero energy ready building embraces both its past character and its role as an educational demonstration. Over 200 sensors and meters provide data and the EcoMachine cleans 100% of the building’s wastewater in full view of occupants.

"With the demand for high-performance buildings ever increasing, the renovation of existing buildings is becoming more important,” said Jury Member, Architect and Past Chair of the National Institute of Building Sciences Jim. Sealy, FAIA. "The Aiken Center team took a dark and unfriendly campus icon and converted it to be an energy-efficient building, as well as a healthier and friendlier feature of the University of Vermont and a model for a national sustainable future.”

The Carbon Neutral Energy Solutions Laboratory, Georgia Institute of Technology, won the Award of Merit for Distinction in High-Performance Buildings.

This 42,000 square foot facility submitted by the Gilbane Building Company was designed and built to match the important work that would go on inside. Through a lean construction approach, the laboratory was delivered on time and nearly achieved net-zero energy.

"The jury appreciated the desire on the part of the owner and the design and construction team to reflect the work being done in the building to advance clean energy sciences,” said Jury Member and Program Manager for Design Excellence Architecture+Sustainability in the Chief Architect’s Office at the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Public Buildings Service (PBS) Lance Davis, AIA. "The incorporation of daylighting and natural ventilation in the lab space, and the attention to grouping spaces of similar needs together, is testament to the importance of having the design team work toward a common goal and cooperate toward that end.”

Category B: High-Performance Initiatives

In Category B: High-Performance Initiatives, the Fort Drum Mountain Community Homes Synergy Rewards Program won the Award of Merit for Distinction in High-Performance Initiatives.

Fort Drum’s Synergy Rewards Program engages more than 4,000 community residents in active pursuit of energy saving opportunities through feedback and incentives. The program features fun and interactive opportunities for residents to learn and receive credits towards rewards. So far, the program has resulted in energy savings of 9%, with benefits accruing to both the residents and Mountain Community Homes.

"The ability to engage over 4,000 residents in an incentive-based program to achieve energy savings in military housing is impressive,” said SBIC Jury Member and Director of Stanford’s Center for Integrated Facility Engineering Martin Fischer. "The jury recognized the work of Fort Drum Mountain Community Homes in communicating opportunities to reduce energy consumption through simple, everyday activities. Lessons learned from this program can be applied across the country and should help inform future initiatives aimed at reducing community energy use.”

Each SBIC Awards Jury is comprised of leading professionals from across the building community. The 2012 Jury included: Piedmont-Palladino, Sealy, Davis, Fischer and Maureen Guttman, AIA, Executive Director of the Building Code Assistance Project (BCAP). The jury is responsible for selecting from the entries those buildings, initiatives and products that best exemplify the eight design objectives of high-performance. Members of the jury reviewed all of the submitted projects and selected winning entries based on each project’s ability to integrate and optimize the high-performance attributes of sustainability, accessibility, aesthetics, cost-effectiveness, functionality, productivity, historical sensitivity, and safety and security.

In addition to their prizes and recognition, Beyond Green™High-Performance Building Award winners have the opportunity to showcase their projects as case studies on the Whole Building Design Guide. View the 2011 award winners’ case studies.

Learn more about the Beyond Green™High-Performance Building Awards and see photos of the 2012 winners. The 2013 awards submission process opens in the summer of 2013.

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