The operation of the building is simple because building operations such as lighting and cooling are principally rooted in natural processes. Active lighting on the second floor consists primarily of individual task lighting. The rest of the space is mostly passively lit by daylight that penetrates the space by virtue of the climate responsive envelope design. Cooling occurs by virtue of the slab’s thermal mass and natural ventilation, which relies upon the laws of nature to drive warmer air up and out of the building’s clerestory when opened. Cavenaugh’s recognition of the natural environment that encompasses the site informed his design decisions and enabled him to significantly reduce the building’s electrical energy load.
Green Tags were purchased to provide the building’s energy from renewable resources for the first two years of operation. The purchase supports and encourages the development and use of grid-source energy technologies on a net zero pollution basis and, coupled with other measures, practically eliminates the building’s contribution to global warming. The green tags added a $65/month premium to the building’s energy bills.
The stormwater filter requires annual cleaning to maintain its permeability and the HVAC system will require normal routine maintenance.
Keys to Success - Operation and Maintenance:
- Design for occupant controllability of space
- Provide lighting via daylighting and task lighting
- Reduce the amount of mechanical systems that will require routine maintenance by employing integrated design
- Purchase green energy to eliminate building energy consumption-related emissions that pollute the atmosphere