Sustainable Design Part Five: Assessment Systems
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Sustainable Design Part Five: Assessment Systems

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This is a basic overview of the role of assessment or green rating systems in the design of buildings. It looks most closely at the LEED Version 2 system for New Construction and has not yet been ...

This is a basic overview of the role of assessment or green rating systems in the design of buildings. It looks most closely at the LEED Version 2 system for New Construction and has not yet been updated to address LEED 2009.

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  • This presentation, What is Sustainable Design? Part Five: Assessing Green Buildings, is intended to provide an overview of Green Building Rating systems, with emphasis on the LEED evaluation system, so that you can begin to compare the sustainable nature of buildings and determine “how green” your own buildings might be.
  • In this presentation, we will discuss: The general idea of rating systems LEED rating system overview Other rating systems
  • The Need to Quantify Sustainable Design Architects are becoming increasingly aware of the need for concern about the negative impact that buildings have on our environment. The broad question (1987-1999) was: “What is sustainable design?” . Many conferences were held where people discussed the issue to try to better understand what was involved and how building design methods might be altered to be more environmentally responsible. The more refined question (2000 - ) is: “How green is it?” As more and more green buildings are constructed, people are looking for ways to validate the quality of these buildings. This is necessary for the market and to answer to clients who may be more concerned with the economics and marketing of their buildings than achieving a “feel good” environmental reward. When working to both create and market sustainable design, it is increasingly important to be able to make definitive assessments so that proposals may be quantified and compared . To do this we use Rating or Assessment systems.
  • Green Building Rating Systems These systems were developed to provide a firmer comparison between buildings so that results could be validated. The systems were developed as needed to respond to specific countries, units of measurement, and legal documents. If a country used Imperial Units it would be difficult to relate to documents in SI. Relevant codes and standards also needed to be referenced. The travel distances vary from country to country, and this needed to be worked into ideas about transportation and materials. Most systems are quite holistic and look at all aspects of sustainable design.
  • Different tools have been developed to assist with the ability to “quantify” and “compare” the greenness of buildings: The following assessment tools address the WHOLE building: BREEAM (meaning B uilding R esearch E stablishment E nvironmental A ssessment M ethod) came from British Research Establishment in the UK and was the first of the assessment tools to come on the scene in the mid 1990s. BREEAM/Green Leaf was developed in North America as a variation on the BREEAM tool. Green Globes in Canada is a BREEAM developed “on-line” tool that provides for an inexpensive ($250) assessment. Its rules are similar to LEED but the categories and reporting are quite different. Green Globes is being further developed in the United States to include a Carbon Assessment protocol. GBTool was d eveloped in Canada by Green Building Challenge (GBC) and is a very comprehensive, highly detailed system but complicated to use. It was the basis for an International Green Building Challenge that was held in 1998, 2000 and 2002. LEED TM is an assessment tool that was developed by the US Green Building Corporation. It was modified by the Cascadia Green Building Corporation in British Columbia for use in BC. This involved changing the units to metric and referencing Canadian legal documents and codes. It was subsequently adopted by the Canadian Green Building Corporation as the unified tool for all of Canada.
  • The Idea of LEED LEED was designed to holistically look at sustainable building and transform the market. Unlike a Building Code which is required by law to be used, it is a completely voluntary system. The assessment is based upon credits earned in 6 categories. As it is voluntary it was designed to be attractive to potential commercial clients and owners. The LEED “brand” is now known across the country and is seen as a selling feature for buildings. LEED stands for – Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and is the leading green building rating system in the both Canada and the United States.
  • The LEED assessment system is divided into Categories, and within each Category, there are credit points to be earned. Sustainable sites has 14 out of 70 points and accounts for 20% of the possible credits. Water Efficiency has 5 out of 70 possible points and accounts for 7% of the possible credits. Energy and Atmosphere has 17 out of 70 possible points and accounts for 25% of the possible credits. Materials and Resources accounts for 13 out of 70 points and accounts for 19% of the possible credits. Indoor Environmental Quality accounts for 15 out of 70 possible points and shows 22% of the possible credits. Innovation and Design Process at 5 out of 70 possible points accounts for 7% of the possible credits. When concern was first expressed over the environmental aspect of buildings it was centered on energy efficiency. The energy crisis in the 1970s focused its attention only on energy performance and this attention resulted in increased insulation levels and air tightness in buildings. As you can see Sustainable Building only considers Energy to be a part of the puzzle and not the key focus. This reflects a change in perspective over the years that reflects concern about the degradation of the environment as a direct result of the building industry.
  • The LEED assessment system is comprised of a checklist system that is subdivided into categories and credits. In the Canadian LEED system for New Construction there are 70 possible points to be earned. Buildings are awarded based upon their level of certification. The highest level is Platinum, and is given for buildings that achieve from 52 to 70 out of a possible 70 points. Gold is given for 39 to 51 points. Silver is given for 33 to 38 points. Bronze or Certified is given for buildings that achieve 26 to 32 points. There are a number of municipalities and governments that have made LEED Silver or Gold certification a requirement for all new government buildings.
  • According to the US Green Building Council there are predictable “savings” in performance from buildings designed to LEED standards. Energy savings can be decreased by 30%. Green buildings can emit 35% less carbon. Water use can be decreased by 30 to 50%. And Waste costs can be reduced by 50 to 90%. These values will naturally vary as a function of the level of certification gained in a building.
  • This graph shows the positioning of LEED in the market place as envisioned by the Green Building councils. The majority of current buildings would score below the Certified level, and some would even be constructed to standards lower than the Building Code. The Building Code is a set of legal regulations that describes MINIMUM standards for safety and construction that must be met by all buildings. As LEED is a voluntary assessment system, it can be seen that at the present time only the high end of construction is building to these standards. The majority of buildings perform less well. It is the intention of LEED to encourage more clients and owners to target LEED Certification levels for their buildings.
  • This chart looks at the energy consumption patterns of a series of buildings. The benchmark is a prototypical office building designed to ASHRAE standards. The buildings to its right show increasing energy efficiency as they have been designed to meet more and more stringent standards. The horizontal lines on the graph reflect the % improvement in energy efficiency as required by the different performance levels of LEED. These types of comparisons are key to understanding the relative effectiveness of certain design strategies. Energy consumption is a key method of comparison and highly respected as it can be fairly accurately predicted and evaluated.
  • What are the Advantages of LEED? The LEED structure is relatively straightforward so simple to implement. It is not overly prescriptive. You can use a number of design strategies to work towards credit points and goals. The entire rating system is based on existing codes, standards and guidelines and does not invent any new ones. It can be modified for local climates and standards. There are a number of mandatory pre-requisites to “get into the game” and a range of credits for increased performance over the baseline. This gives it legitimacy and consistency. Each credit is structured with the intent stated, followed by the requirements and then with suggested strategies for achieving the credit. The result is that is it relatively straightforward to decide, at early stages of a project, whether a given credit can be cost-effectively achieved. The recognition of various achievement levels is done by awarding Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum designations. There are different versions of LEED that can be used on different building types. The first system, New Construction was followed by Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings, Homes and Neighbourhood Development.
  • There are different versions of LEED that can be used on different building types. The first system, New Construction was followed by Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings, Homes and Neighbourhood Development. Each system has its unique set of concerns. This presentation will focus only on New Construction as it was the first to be deployed and is the one still most commonly used.
  • The collected LEED base sections amount to 65 points in 32 credit categories. Adding the 5 points for Innovation & Design Process results in a potential of 70 points . Buildings are accredited by the number of points gained: 26 to 32 point is LEED certified; 33 to 38 points is LEED Silver ; 39 to 51 is LEED Gold , and; LEED Platinum is awarded to projects with 52 or more points . By awarding a medal to successful buildings, LEED is an incentive-based system, which can be easily understood by designers and clients alike. It can also be used as a forceful marketing tool, by “brand naming” buildings with the LEED award label. Several cities in the United States and Canada have adopted LEED Silver, for instance, as the minimum standard for all new municipal construction.
  • Pre-requisite Credits in LEED In the LEED system, many of the categories include pre-requisite points/credits. You MUST achieve these credits or none of the other credits in the category count. The intent of the pre-requisite points is to set up basic criteria for sustainable building for the category. The pre=requisites are as follows: Sustainable Sites : erosion and sedimentation control Water Efficiency: there is no pre-requisite credit Energy & Atmosphere : Fundamental Building Systems Commissioning, Minimum Energy Performance, CFC Reduction Materials and Resources : Storage and Collection of Recyclables Indoor Environmental Quality : Minimum IAQ, No Tobacco Smoke
  • LEED Step by Step The next portion of the presentation will look at each of the six LEED Categories and examine the credit points within each category. The LEED Canada-NC 1.0 rating system applies to new construction and major renovations of commercial and institutional buildings, i.e., buildings regulated by Part 3 of the National Building Code. It also applies to retail, mid- and high-rise multi-unit residential buildings (MURBs), public assembly buildings, manufacturing plants, and other types of buildings.
  • Sustainable Sites: 20% : 14/70 points Sustainable Sites deals primarily with issues of site selection, site access and site design (materials, density, drainage). The prerequisite concerns erosion and sedimentation control on site. There are eight credits offering a total of 14 potential points. The development of sustainable site design is seen as a critical starting point for an attitude towards the entire building design in the Integrated Design Process.
  • The Prerequisite for Sustainable Sites is Erosion and Sedimentation Control. LEED wants to be sure that the site is being cared for during construction and that rainwater will not be transporting the earth and topsoil that is on the site away and “down the road”. Credit 1 is Site Selection. The intention is to build on land that is environmentally marginalized and not natural habitat. Credit 2 is Development Density. LEED favours the intensification of cities over building in undeveloped areas. Credit 3 is Brownfield Development and gives a credit for constructing on a previously used urban site. Credit 4.1 Alternative Transportation, Public Transportation is given for having a public transportation stop (bus or subway) near to the building. This will mean that people can be less car dependent. Credit 4.2 Alternative Transportation, Bicycle Storage and Changing Rooms is given for making safe and easy access to bike racks on site and for providing showering facilities so that users can clean up before starting work. Credit 4.3 Alternative Transportation, Alternative Fuel Vehicles credits the provision of designated close parking spaces for employees that have these kinds of vehicles. They might also require a plug in provision in the case of electric vehicles. Credit 4.4 Alternative Transportation, Parking Capacity gives a credit for reducing the number of parking spaces provided below the normal Zoning requirements. This might require that Cities approve such a variation. Credit 5.1 Reduced Site Disturbance, Protect or Restore Open Space is rewarding the care that needs to be taken on the construction site to keep the building contractor for obliterating all of the natural habitat on the site during construction. Credit is also given if a portion of the site, more than is in existence at the outset of the project, is naturally restored. Credit 5.1 Development Footprint encourages building density and more of the site to be devoted to landscape and enhanced natural environments. Credit 6.1 Stormwater Management Rate and Quantity is looking to prevent the flow of rainwater off of the building site and into the storm sewer system. Credit 6.2 Stormwater Management Treatment is looking to have runoff water treated on site, through bioswales or other natural means, to prevent its discharge, and the discharge of toxins and particulates, into the sewer system. Credit 7.1 Landscape and Exterior Design to Reduce Heat Islands, Non-Roof credits the use of paving and landscaping materials that do not hold heat. Light coloured paving and porous paving are helpful in this category. Credit 7.2 Landscape and Exterior Design to Reduce Heat Islands, Roof credits the use of Green Roofs and White Roof Membrane materials, both of which can cause the heat in urban centres to increase – leading to increased use of A/C systems. Credit 8 Light Pollution Reduction discourages the excessive use of exterior night lighting, recognizing that excessive light obliterates our view of the sky and stars and is known to cause reproductive problems in many species, leading to their eventual extinction. A case in point would be some species of frogs, that like many people, prefer to reproduce in the dark!
  • These are some examples of control measures used in green buildings in the Sustainable Sites category. This is the green roof used on the Vancouver Public Library designed by Moshe Safdie. It uses native plants and is low in maintenance and water use. The roof absorbs rain water, resulting in less discharge into the sewer system. It helps to offset Urban Heat Island. It is also quite beautiful to look at from the neighbouring high buildings. The green roof on the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa designed by Raymond Moriama uses the green roof to nestle the building into the landscape and make it feel part of the Breton Flats where it is situated. It also helps Heat Island issues and to absorb rain water.
  • Green on the Grand in Kitchener, Ontario has a rainwater retention pond as part of its site approach. This holds storm water from being discharged into the nearby Grand River. The pond offsets urban heat island effect. It also provides an exchange mechanism that is used with the heating and cooling system for the building. The renovation to the old Brickworks in Toronto into “Evergreen” uses the natural aspects of the site to collect rainwater and maintain the natural feeling of the site.
  • Water Efficiency: 7% : 5/70 points Water Efficiency is the smallest section comprising only three credits, worth 5 points. This section deals with landscaping, wastewater treatment and water use reduction. Items such as Living Machines™, use of the Waterloo Biofilter™, waterless urinals and composting toilets can be rewarded with points in this category.
  • There are no prerequisites in the Water Efficiency section and it is also the aspect of LEED that seems to have the highest take up rate. Credit 1.1 Water Efficient Landscaping, Reduce by 50% rewards the installation of landscapes that use indigenous plants, perennials in particular, that use no more than 50% of the normal amount of potable water to keep them healthy. Credit 1.2 Water Efficient Landscaping, No Potable Use or No Irrigation awards landscaping that is even more efficient. Cisterns can be used to collect rainwater for this credit point. Credit 2 Innovative Wastewater Technologies rewards the incorporation of systems like the Living Machine or Waterloo Biofilter, or any advanced system that can process the blackwater discharge on site and prevent discharging waste into the public sewer system. Credits 3.1 and 3.1 Water Use Reduction, 20% and 30% Reduction reward the use of efficient plumbing fixtures such as waterless urinals, low flow toilets, dual flush toilets, low flow showerheads, etc.
  • These systems would earn Credit 3.3 Innovative Wastewater Technologies. Living Machines, such as the one at the YMCA Environmental Learning Centre processes the blackwater from toilets by taking it through a series of anerobic (no air) and aerobic (with air) digesters. The Waterloo Biofilter that is used in the CMHC Healthy House in Toronto does essentially the same process, but it contained for use in a tighter urban environment.
  • At the White Rock Operations Centre in White Rock, B.C., the rainwater is collected and used for both the washing of trucks and the watering of the beautiful landscape that surrounds the building. This building was designed by the office of Peter Busby and was the first LEED Gold project in Canada.
  • Energy and Atmosphere: 25% : 17/70 points Energy and Atmosphere includes three prerequisites – fundamental building systems commissioning, minimum energy performance, and CFC reduction in HVAC&R equipment. The prerequisites are followed by six credits for energy performance, renewable energy and additional building monitoring, with a potential value of eight points.
  • Prerequisite 1 under Energy and Atmosphere, Fundamental Building Systems Commissioning is designed to ensure that a building is not occupied prior to the setting in motion and testing of all of the mechanical and electrical systems in a building. Much is often done in terms of design for energy efficiency through the use of simulation programs during the design process. If the systems are not tested and tuned properly, the building is not likely to run as efficiently as predicted. Prerequisite 2 Minimum Energy Performance establishes a baseline for energy efficiency. It is intended to prevent a LEED project from completely ignoring energy efficiency. Prerequisite 3 CFC Reduction in HVAC&R Equipment and Elimination of Halons is designed to ensure that the equipment in buildings does not contribute to greenhouse gas emissions that result from the leakage of refrigerants. Credit 1, Optimize Energy Performance can result in an award of 1 to 10 credits. This varies as a function of the percentage reduction in the Operating Energy of the building. Credits 2.1, 2.3 and 2.3 give rewards for the incorporation of Renewable Energy (like photovoltaics or wind) in the 5%, 10% and 20% range of the total energy required to operate the building. Credit 3, Additional Commissioning asks that the Owner look at the operations of the building once it is in use, to be sure that the systems are set up and running correctly. Credit 4, Ozone Depletion, asks that you install building equipment that does not use HCFCs. These have in the past contributed to the depletion of the Ozone layer of the atmosphere. Credit 5, Measurement and Verification asks that a continuous metering system be installed to be sure that the building systems are running optimally all of the time. Credit 6, Green Power gives a point for purchasing some of your electricity from a verified Green Power supplier.
  • Prior to the adoption of LEED, energy efficiency was the only motivation to improving design strategies! It did succeed in effecting: - increased levels of insulation, - higher efficiency ratings on appliances and heating/cooling systems And, tighter building envelopes. Within the holistic sustainable design framework provided by LEED, the relative importance of these issues has been revised to represent only 25% of the potential credits.
  • The Terasen Gas Facility in Surrey, B.C. uses passive systems to increase its energy efficiency by reducing the need for Air Conditioning. Each of the facades of the building is designed with a glazing and shading system that is appropriate for the orientation. The north side of the building has no shading. The south side uses horizontal projections to protect from the sun. The east and west facades use selective exterior glass shades to keep hot horizontal light out of the building. The building incorporated natural ventilation through operable windows to reduce the need for A/C. The interior of the building uses a lot of exposed concrete. This is effective for storing the passive solar gain that comes in through the windows during the cold months of the year when the sun angles are lower.
  • The Revenue Canada Building in Surrey, B.C. Designed by Busby and Associates, was used as the Canadian entry in the first International Green Building Challenge in 1998. It employs a system of exterior shades to reduce heat gain. The shades also serve to bounce daylight to the interior, helping with electricity and lighting requirements. The building has operable windows for natural ventilation when the weather is appropriate. The National Works Yard in Vancouver, designed by Omicron Architecture and Engineering, uses large overhangs to shade the windows. Operable windows provide for natural ventilation.
  • Materials and Resources: 20% : 14/70 points With 14 points generated in seven credits, Materials and Resources has only one prerequisite: storage and collection of recyclables. The credits focus on building reuse; waste management; reused, recycled or certified materials; as well as local or regional materials. LEED Canada has introduced a new credit in this category to recognize the importance of building durably. The Durable Building credit brought the number of credits in the Canadian version of LEED to 70 – over the 69 in the American version 2.1 for New Construction.
  • Credit 8: Durable Building Credit * ask that you “Minimize materials use and construction waste over a building’s life resulting from premature failure of the building and its constituent components and assemblies”. It promotes the incorporation of materials based upon a Life Cycle Assessment viewpoint. The credit references the Guideline on Durability in Buildings CSA S478-95 (R2001). If components cannot be proven to last for the design service life of the building, then they are to be specified and constructed with disassembly in mind. You have to demonstrate the predicted service life of chosen components or assemblies by documenting demonstrated effectiveness or by modelling their deterioration.
  • The Prerequisite in Materials and Resources requires the Storage and Collection of Recyclable Materials/Waste. In larger buildings this can occupy a significant amount of floor area and require logistics for the collection and removal of these materials. Credit 1.1 and 1.2 look positively at the potential for the reuse of existing buildings. If either 75% or 100% of the shell is maintained, credits are earned. It is expected that both old windows and old roofing materials will be removed as the upgrading of both of these components can greatly improve energy performance. Credit 1.3 rewards for the maintenance of both the shell and non shell components. The non shell components would include interior partitions. Credit 2.1 and 2.2 reward the diversion of Construction Waste by values of 50% and 75%. This will entail the contractor sorting the waste into bins so that each material can be taken and recycled or reused more easily. Credit 3.1 and 3.2, Resource Reuse 5% and 10% is intended to encourage the reuse of materials rather than their recycling. Reuse results in lower energy costs associated with materials. Credit 4.1 and 4.2 Recycled Content requires a thorough accounting of all materials in the project for their recycled content – looking both a post industrial and post consumer waste amounts. Credits 5.1 and 5.2 reward the use of local materials. It is meant to discourage the use of materials that require long shipping distances. Closer sources will reduce the greenhouse gas emissions associated with transportation. It also encourages the local economy to purchase locally. The credit looks at manufactured as well as harvested materials. Credit 6, Rapidly Renewable Materials credits the use of products such as strawbale, wheatboard and bamboo as these materials grow quickly and are effectively more easily renewed than wood and timber. Credit 7, Certified Wood requires that the wood in the building be harvested from sustainable forests. This excludes the use of exotic woods from the Rain Forest and wood that is improperly harvested from Old Growth forests. Credit 8, Durable Building, we have already discussed. Its intention is to create buildings that generally last longer.
  • The Liu Centre at the University of British Columbia, designed by Architectura/Stantec makes good use of sustainable materials. The zinc cladding is very durable. The timbers in the roof of the round lecture theatre were salvaged from the demolition of another project. Flyash, a waste product of the steel industry, was used in the concrete as a replacement for some of the cement. One of the most energy intensive aspects of concrete is the manufacture of cement, so using flyash in its stead is good. The local ecology of the site was protected during construction. This reflects more of the requirements of Sustainable Sites.
  • The Telus Building in Vancouver, B.C, designed by Peter Busby and Associates, reused the existing building. The concrete shell was maintained and reclad with a glass skin. Even the old wood frame double hung windows were retained. Natural ventilation was incorporated into the skin. The interior was painted white to be highly reflective. The concrete that was exposed by the removal of the old acoustic suspended ceiling could now be used to store passive heat.
  • The C.K. Choi Institute at the University of British Columbia, made good use of existing materials. The brick was salvaged from buildings being demolished in Vancouver. The same for the large timbers that are used to frame the building. The three storey building incorporates composting toilets (water efficiency). There is natural ventilation and no air conditioning required. The site was carefully protected as not to harm the forest directly behind the building.
  • Flyash is a waste product from the production of steel that can be used to replace a significant portion of the cement in the concrete mix. Cement is environmentally bad because of its high embodied energy. Flyash is used in both the York University Computer Building in Toronto, as well as Terasen Gas. The setting time for the concrete can be longer, which has to be worked into the construction schedule. The concrete is slightly darker in colour and more dense, making it a very appealing product.
  • Indoor Environmental Quality: 22% : 15/70 points Indoor Environmental Quality is the largest category with two prerequisites, IAQ performance and environmental tobacco smoke control, eight credits and a total of 15 points. The credits in the indoor environment quality cover many issues of air quality, including ventilation and carbon dioxide monitoring, low-emitting materials, construction IAQ, controllability of systems, operable windows, thermal comfort and daylight and view access . This category places high emphasis on occupant comfort and well-being – issues that are not addressed in other mandatory code requirements – this category falling outside issues of life safety, structural integrity and minimum energy requirements. (Indoor Environmental Quality is not addressed in the Building Code to any extent, so many commercial and institutional buildings ignore this requirement completely!)
  • Prerequisite 1 demands a Minimum Level of Indoor Air Quality Performance. Prerequisite 2 demands a smoke free building. It is not possible to have good IEQ if there is tobacco smoke in or around the building. Smoking areas have to be distanced from entrances and air intake vents as well. Credit 1 is Carbon Dioxide monitoring. These devices will sound an alarm if levels of CO2 become excessive. Credit 2, Ventilation Effectiveness requires that it be demonstrated that the ventilation in the building works to bring the fresh air requirement to all occupants. Credit 3.1, Construction !AQ Management Plan during Construction is intended to keep the ducts and hidden spaces in the building free from the accumulation of debris, dust and toxins during construction, that might not be properly cleaned prior to occupation of the building. Credit 3.2, Construction IAQ Management Plan before Occupancy is intended to allow for the full operation of the building systems for a period prior to occupancy to flush out any VOCs or emitted chemicals from carpets, furniture and paint. These elements are very intense at the completion of construction as most of these systems are installed towards the end of the project. Credits 4.1, 4.2, 4.3 and 4.3 reward the use of low emitting adhesives and sealants, paints, carpets and composite wood. Credit 5 looks at Indoor Chemical and Pollutant Source Control. This means the isolation of janitor’s closets and printing rooms as well as ensuring that their fumes are exhausted safely outside of the building. Credit 6.1, Controllability of Systems, Perimeter seeks to ensure that all occupants that are sitting adjacent to an exterior wall can open and close both windows and blinds to control access to the sun and fresh air. Credit 6.2, Controllability of Systems, Non-Perimeter tries to give some control of light and air to occupants that do not have offices or desks adjacent to an exterior wall. Credit 7.1, Thermal Comfort, Comply with ASHRAE 55-1992 establishes a baseline for the temperature and relative humidity in the building so that occupant comfort cannot be overlooked. Credit 7.2, Thermal Comfort, Permanent Monitoring System gives a reward for the constant monitoring of the interior conditions of the building. Credit 8.1 and 8.2, Daylight and views seek to ensure that most of the rooms, and thereby the occupants, have access to daylight. This has proved to increase occupant comfort and performance.
  • The Bahen Centre at the University of Toronto, designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects, uses a large skylight to provide light to the interior atrium. This makes for a delightful space and also cuts down on the amount of electric lighting that is required for the interior. Daylighting lets occupants connect with the exterior environment, including the time of day and the weather.
  • Jackson-Triggs Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, designed by KPMB Architects uses daylighting to light the interior spaces of the wine production areas. This makes for a more attractive space during building tours. The central stair at the George and Kathy Dembroski Centre at Edwards Gardens in Toronto, by Montgomery Sisam Architects, uses natural light in the circulation areas allowing the building to avoid the use of electric lighting during the daytime hours.
  • Daylighting is a very important part of architectural design. All three of these buildings use access to light to both enhance the architectural quality of the spaces, increase occupant comfort and well being, while also reducing the dependence on electricity to light these spaces during the daytime.
  • Innovation and Design Process 7% : 5/70 points Innovation credits are awarded for unusual ideas and practices, exceeding the performance in any single credit. The involvement of a LEED Accredited Professional also earns a point.
  • This is likely the trickiest set of credits to get… and the ones that involve the greatest commitment of effort (aside from Credit 2, using a LEED AP, which is a no-brainer!)
  • In the York University Computer Science Building a critical part of the success of this project was the involvement of the ENTIRE design team from the outset of the project. Working with the mechanical engineer allowed the Architects to lay out the building to properly zone the uses so to have heat generating process on the cool side of the building.
  • The realization of the shape of the building and the relationships between the spaces was not remarkably dissimilar from the early IDP sketches generated by the team.
  • LEED is a registered trademark of USGBC and CaGBC. Only buildings certified by USGBC and CaGBC under the LEED Green Building Rating System may refer to themselves as LEED buildings. The certification process involves the following: Register the Project to initiate a relationship with USGBC and receive orientation materials. Registration during pre-design phase is highly recommended. Technical Support comes in the form of the Reference Guide and Credit Rulings. In some cases, the design team may encounter questions about the application of a LEED prerequisite or credit to the specifics of their project. The project contact should first thoroughly consult the Reference Guide . If questions remain, the contact should use the following credit interpretation procedure: The project contact reviews the intent of the credit or prerequisite in question to self-evaluate whether their project meets this intent . The project contact reviews the LEED Credit Rulings Page for a previously logged credit interpretation request (CIR) that may assist in answering their particular question. Apply for certification. Application review can take anywhere from six weeks to several months. There are several opportunities for response and appeal throughout the review stages (administrative, preliminary technical, and final technical reviews).
  • LEED is not the only holistic rating system in use in Canada. Green Globes is an online system that looks at many of the same criteria and is thought by some to be simpler and less expensive It is limited to use for New Buildings. It uses an online confidential questionnaire.
  • This is a screenshot from the Green Globes web site showing you the interface.
  • The Athena Institute offers tools that assess the embodied energy and carbon in the building. These are necessary when evaluating Carbon Neutral Buildings.
  • Rating Systems Rating systems are essential in the development and assessment of the success of green buildings. It will be necessary to come to some agreement with your client as to the one they would like to use. Eventually it is hoped that all buildings will be constructed sustainably. Using one of these systems is a good first step.
  • In this presentation, we discussed: The general idea of rating systems LEED rating system overview Other rating systems

Sustainable Design Part Five: Assessment Systems Sustainable Design Part Five: Assessment Systems Presentation Transcript

  • What is Sustainable Design? Part Five: Assessing Green Buildings Terri Meyer Boake BES, BArch, MArch, LEED AP Associate Director School of Architecture University of Waterloo Past President of the Society of Building Science Educators Member OAA Committee on Sustainable Built Environment
  • Presentation Summary
    • In this presentation, we will discuss:
    • The general idea of rating systems
    • LEED rating system overview
    • Other rating systems
  • The need to “quantify” sustainable design...
    • Architects are becoming increasingly aware of the need for concern about the negative impact that buildings have on our environment.
    • The broad question (1987-1999) was: “What is sustainable design?”
    • The more refined question (2000 - ) is: “How green is it?”
    • When working to both create and market sustainable design, it is increasingly important to be able to make definitive assessments so that proposals may be quantified and compared .
    • Rating or Assessment systems are used to do this.
  • Green Rating Systems
    • Developed to provide a firmer comparison between buildings
    • They need to respond to specific countries, units of measurement, legal documents
    • Most systems are quite holistic and look at all aspects of sustainable design
  • Different tools have been developed to assist with the ability to “quantify” and “compare” the greenness of buildings: Assessment tools that address the WHOLE building: BREEAM: B uilding R esearch E stablishment E nvironmental A ssessment M ethod from British Research Establishment in the UK BREEAM/Green Leaf: variation on tool Green Globes: BREEAM developed “on-line” tool that provides for an inexpensive ($250) assessment (rules similar to LEED) GBTool: Developed in Canada by Green Building Challenge (GBC) very comprehensive, most detailed, but complicated to use LEED TM : Assessment tool developed by the USGBC
  • The Idea of LEED TM
    • LEED was designed to holistically look at sustainable building and transform the market. It is a voluntary system. Assessment is based upon credits earned.
    L EADERSHIP in E NERGY and E NVIRONMENTAL D ESIGN A leading-edge system for certifying DESIGN, CONSTRUCTION, & OPERATIONS of the greenest buildings in the world Scores are tallied for different aspects of efficiency and design in appropriate categories. For instance, LEED assesses in detail: 1. Site Planning 2. Water Management 3. Energy Management 4. Material Use 5. Indoor Environmental Air Quality 6. Innovation & Design Process
  • The LEED Categories The energy crisis of the 1970s only looked at “energy efficiency” Pie based on LEED old version – not yet updated for LEED 2009
  • LEED Rewards
    • Platinum 52-70 points
    • Gold 39-51 points
    • Silver 33-38 points
    • Bronze 26-32 points
    • Gaining ground as a very successful marketing system for high performance buildings!
    Based on LEED old version – not yet updated for LEED 2009
  • Test Average Savings of Green Buildings ENERGY SAVINGS 30% CARBON SAVINGS 35% WATER USE SAVINGS 30-50% WASTE COST SAVINGS 50-90% Source: Capital E
  • Positioning of LEED ® in the Market Image: USGBC
    • Comparisons are the key to understanding the relative effectiveness of certain design strategies.
    • Relatively simple to implement
    • Not overly prescriptive
    • Can be modified for local climate and standards (LEED™ BC and LEED™ Canada)
    • It has legitimacy and consistency
    • Credibility of third party verification
    • There are different versions of LEED that can be used on different building types
    What are the Advantages of LEED ® ?
  • The Various LEED TM Rating Systems
    • LEED TM systems have been developed to align more closely with building types:
    • New Construction
    • Commercial Interior
    • Existing Buildings
    • Homes
    • Neighbourhood Development
    • This presentation will focus only on New Construction
    Based on LEED old version – not yet updated for LEED 2009
    • The collected LEED base sections amount to 65 points in 32 credit categories. Adding the 5 points for Innovation & Design Process results in a potential of 70 points . Buildings are accredited by the number of points gained: 26 to 32 point is LEED certified; 33 to 38 points is LEED Silver ; 39 to 51 is LEED Gold , and; LEED Platinum is awarded to projects with 52 or more points . By awarding a medal to successful buildings, LEED is an incentive-based system, which can be easily understood by designers and clients alike. It can also be used as a forceful marketing tool, by “brand naming” buildings with the LEED award label. Several cities in the United States and Canada have adopted LEED Silver, for instance, as the minimum standard for all new municipal construction.
  • Pre-requisite credits
    • in the LEED system, many of the categories include pre-requisite points/credits
    • you MUST achieve these credits or none of the other credits in the category count
    • the intent of the pre-requisite points is to set up basic criteria for sustainable building for the category
    • Sustainable Sites : erosion and sedimentation control
    • Water Efficiency: there is no pre-requisite credit
    • Energy & Atmosphere : Fundamental Building Systems Commissioning, Minimum Energy Performance, CFC Reduction
    • Materials and Resources : Storage and Collection of Recyclables
    • Indoor Environmental Quality : Minimum IAQ, No Tobacco Smoke
  • LEED Step by Step
    • The next portion of the presentation will look at each of the six LEED Categories and examine the credit points within each category.
    • The LEED Canada-NC 1.0 rating system applies to new construction and major renovations of commercial and institutional buildings, i.e., buildings regulated by Part 3 of the National Building Code. It also applies to retail, mid- and high-rise multi-unit residential buildings (MURBs), public assembly buildings, manufacturing plants, and other types of buildings.
  • Sustainable Sites: 20% : 14/70 points
    • Sustainable Sites deals primarily with issues of site selection, site access and site design (materials, density, drainage).
    • The prerequisite concerns erosion and sedimentation control on site.
    • There are eight credits offering a total of 14 potential points. The development of sustainable site design is seen as a critical starting point for an attitude towards the entire building design in the Integrated Design Process.
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  • Sustainable Sites: Examples Vancouver Public Library
    • green roof
    • controls site water
    • offsets urban heat island effect
    Canadian War Museum
  • Sustainable Sites: Examples Green on the Grand, Kitchener, Ontario
    • storm water retention pond
    • controls site water
    • offsets urban heat island effect
    • also used with heating/AC system
    Evergreen – Brickworks Toronto, Ontario
  • Water Efficiency: 7% : 5/70 points
    • Water Efficiency is the smallest section comprising only three credits, worth 5 points.
    • This section deals with landscaping, wastewater treatment and water use reduction. Items such as Living Machines™, use of the Waterloo Biofilter™, waterless urinals and composting toilets can be rewarded with points in this category.
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  • Water Efficiency: Examples YMCA Environmental Learning Centre: Living Machine CMHC Healthy House: Waterloo Biofilter
  • Water Efficiency: Examples The White Rock Operations Centre uses 100% reclaimed water for both vehicle washing and landscape watering.
  • Energy and Atmosphere: 25% : 17/70 points
    • Energy and Atmosphere includes three prerequisites – fundamental building systems commissioning, minimum energy performance, and CFC reduction in HVAC&R equipment.
    • The prerequisites are followed by six credits for energy performance, renewable energy and additional building monitoring, with a potential value of eight points.
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  • Energy and Atmosphere: 25% : 17/70 points cont’d
    • Prior to the adoption of LEED, energy efficiency was the only motivation to improving design strategies! It did succeed in effecting:
    • increased levels of insulation,
    • higher efficiency ratings on appliances and heating/cooling systems
    • tighter building envelopes
    • Within the holistic sustainable design framework provided by LEED, the relative importance of these issues has been revised to represent only 25% of the potential credits.
  • Energy and Atmosphere: Examples
    • orientation differentiation
    • shading devices
    • natural ventilation
    • passive gain
    Terasen Gas, Surrey, BC.
  • Energy and Atmosphere: Examples Revenue Canada, Surrey, BC.
    • orientation differentiation
    • shading devices
    • natural ventilation
    • passive gain
    National Works Yard, Vancouver, BC.
  • Materials and Resources: 20% : 14/70 points
    • With 14 points generated in seven credits, Materials and Resources has only one prerequisite: storage and collection of recyclables.
    • The credits focus on building reuse; waste management; reused, recycled or certified materials; as well as local or regional materials.
    • LEED Canada introduced a new credit in this category to recognize the importance of building durably. The Durable Building Credit was not included in the US version of LEED for New Construction V 2.1.
  • Credit 8: Durable Building
    • “ Minimize materials use and construction waste over a building’s life resulting from premature failure of the building and its constituent components and assemblies”
    • promotes the incorporation of materials based upon a Life Cycle Assessment viewpoint
    • credit references the Guideline on Durability in Buildings CSA S478-95 (R2001)
    • If components cannot be proven to last for the design service life of the building, then they are to be specified and constructed with disassembly in mind
    • demonstrate the predicted service life of chosen components or assemblies by documenting demonstrated effectiveness or modeling deterioration
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  • Materials and Resources: Examples Liu Centre for Asian Studies, UBC
    • low energy/durable materials
    • re-used large timbers in roof structure
    • also low site impact - no destruction of local trees, retained site vegetation
    • flyash concrete
  • Materials and Resources: Examples Telus Building, Vancouver, BC
    • avoided demolition of building
    • re-used concrete structure
    • energy efficient double skin façade (EA)
    • exposed concrete for passive gain (EA)
  • Materials and Resources: Examples C.K. Choi Institute, UBC
    • re-used brick on exterior
    • re-used large timber structures on interior
    • composting toilets (WE)
    • natural ventilation (IEQ)
  • Materials and Resources: Flyash Concrete York University, Computer Science Building, Toronto Terasen Gas, Surrey, BC Flyash is a waste product from the production of steel that can be used to replace a significant portion of the cement in the concrete mix. Cement is environmentally bad because of its high embodied energy.
  • Indoor Environmental Quality: 22% : 15/70 points
    • Indoor Environmental Quality is the largest category with two prerequisites, IAQ performance and environmental tobacco smoke control, eight credits and a total of 15 points.
    • The credits in the indoor environment quality cover many issues of air quality, including ventilation and carbon dioxide monitoring, low-emitting materials, construction IAQ, controllability of systems, operable windows, thermal comfort and daylight and view access . This category places high emphasis on occupant comfort and well-being – issues that are not addressed in other mandatory code requirements – this category falling outside issues of life safety, structural integrity and minimum energy requirements.
    • (Indoor Environmental Quality is not addressed in the Building Code to any extent, so many commercial and institutional buildings ignore this requirement completely)
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    • Bahen Centre, UofT
    Indoor Environmental Quality: Examples
    • daylighting
    • daylighting
    Indoor Environmental Quality: Examples Jackson-Triggs Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario The Dembroski Centre at Edwards Garden, Toronto
    • Richmond City Hall, Richmond BC
    Indoor Environmental Quality: Daylighting and Views MEC, Ottawa, Ontario Information Technology Building, UofO, Ottawa, Ontario
  • Innovation and Design Process: 7% : 5/70 points
    • Innovation credits are awarded for unusual ideas and practices, exceeding the performance in any single credit.
    • The involvement of a LEED Accredited Professional also earns a point.
  • This is likely the trickiest set of credits to get… and the ones that involve the greatest commitment of effort (aside from Credit 2 which is a no-brainer!)
  • Innovation and Design Process: Examples York University Computer Science Building: A critical part of the success of this project was the involvement of the ENTIRE design team from the outset of the project. Working with the mechanical engineer allowed the Architects to lay out the building to properly zone the uses so to have heat generating process on the cool side of the building, etc.
  • The realization of the shape of the building and the relationships between the spaces was not remarkably dissimilar from the early IDP sketches generated by the team.
  • LEED-NC ® Certification Process
    • A three step process:
      • Step 1: Project Registration
          • LEED Letter Templates, CIR access, and on-line project listing
      • Step 2: Technical Support
          • Reference Package
          • Credit Inquiries and Rulings (CIR)
      • Step 3: Building Certification
          • Upon documentation submittal and USGBC or CaGBC review
  • Green Globes Rating System
    • LEED is not the only holistic rating system in use in Canada.
    • Green Globes is an online system that looks at many of the same criteria and is thought by some to be simpler and less expensive
    • It is limited to use for New Buildings
    • It uses an online confidential questionnaire
    • http://www.greenglobes.com
  • Green Globes Interface
  • Athena
    • The Athena Institute offers tools that assess the embodied energy and carbon in the building
    • These are necessary when evaluating Carbon Neutral Buildings
    • http://www.athenasmi.org/tools/impactEstimator/
  • Rating Systems
    • Rating systems are essential in the development and assessment of the success of green buildings
    • It will be necessary to come to some agreement with your client as to the one they would like to use
    • Eventually it is hoped that all buildings will be constructed sustainably. Using one of these systems is a good first step.
  • Presentation Summary
    • In this presentation, we discussed:
    • The general idea of rating systems
    • LEED rating system overview
    • Other rating systems