Energy and Atmosphere

Requirement: Achieve building energy savings that exceed the basic code design requirements for a similar building, and verify the systems are installed and operating as designed through a formal process of building commissioning. This credit area for the Swenson Center involved the following:

  • Fundamental commissioning of the building energy systems
  • Meeting minimum energy performance standards
  • Fundamental refrigerant management
  • Optimizing energy performance
  • Enhanced commissioning
  • Measurement and verification

How Did We Achieve Overall Energy Savings?

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that buildings consume approximately 37% of the energy and 68% of the electricity produced in the U.S. annually.

CLU and the design team targeted several areas:

  • No air conditioning in the lobbies and second floor hallway.
  • Ceiling fans in the second floor hallway to provide air movement.
  • Ceiling mounted radiant gas heaters provide localized heating for seating and gathering areas during the cooler months.
  • High efficiency roof-mounted heating/cooling units.
  • Individual air conditioning/heating units for each classroom, scheduled independently through the building energy management system.
  • Use clerestory windows and skylights to bring daylight into hallways and lobbies and allow photocells to turn off lights.
  • Lighting control system with "daylight harvesting feature" to turn some lights off automatically and reduce light levels.
  • Conduct formal building commissioning to ensure all systems are operating as designed, and meet the University's requirements.
  • Ongoing measurement and verification of the energy savings produced by the building.
  • Cool roof to reflect heat and limit heat gain in the building.
  • Low E glass used for windows and lobbies to reduce heat gain in the building.
  • Solar shades for windows on the south, and west orientations.