Brookfield, WI, March 19, 2010 --(PR.com
)-- When considering a new construction project, what do you get when you gather in a room a general contractor, an architect and a building automation systems integrator? It’s a trick question. Rarely do all three collaborate. And, if collaboration occurs, the conversation typically centers on first-cost of construction, rather than on long-term cost of the building and ROI over the life-cycle of the facility.
Environmental Systems, Inc., Hunzinger Construction and Stephen Perry Smith Architects, however, turned traditional design-build process upside down when constructing new office space known as Gateway West Sustainable I. Taking a collaborative-building, life-cycle view during the planning phase resulted in recognition by the Business Journal of Greater Milwaukee’s Real Estate Awards in the category of Best New Development-Office.
“Through real-time tracking of cost savings, this building demonstrates every day that sustainability and profitability are not mutually exclusive when using efficient, intelligent design while remaining focused on business value,” Stephen Perry Smith Architects Matt Mano says.
Operating 36 percent more efficiently than current building codes require, the new office building will attempt to be certified LEED platinum for new construction by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). Meanwhile, the project will evolve through installation of a photovoltaic (PV) array on the south side of the building, which will produce 8 percent of the overall energy supply. Overall energy efficiency will improve to 44 percent better than code.
“The new facility is designed to continue to evolve as technology and efficiencies improve,” Mano says. “Through this evolutionary design, we also will attempt to achieve LEED Certification under the Existing Building Operation and Maintenance (EBOM) rating system. EBOM certification ensures facility usage remains aligned with USGBC/LEED-recognized sustainable practices when undertaking the daily operation and maintenance of the facility well into the future.”
A high-performance building envelope allowed the design-build team to reduce the size of the mechanical systems, thereby providing energy-efficient heating and cooling. Visibly sustainable features include minimizing water usage and environmental impact through sustainable landscape design, reducing heat island effect through less paved surface in the parking lot, and implementing the re-use of several construction materials within the overall building design.
“The LEED process drives an integrated design and construction process that yields high-performance buildings that are economical to operate and more comfortable for its occupants, which improves productivity,” Hunzinger Construction Executive Vice President/LEED AP James Hunzinger says. “These attributes are both tangible and measureable.”
Collaboration during the design and construction of Gateway West Sustainable I produced a showcase for practical sustainability, which centers on efficient use of resources impacting bottom-line returns.
“Considering the current state of the economy and the business impact of efficiency and sustainability efforts, I believe the interest in our new facility derives from executives wanting to understand how improved building performance reduces operating costs, improves productivity and generates a measureable return on investment,” ESI President Paul Oswald says.
Environmental Systems, Inc. provides performance-building solutions for control and automation, systems integration, security, life safety, advanced software applications, energy services and building operations. ESI’s solutions reduce operating costs, improve sustainability and provide a positive return on investment. Visit ThinkESI.com for more information.
Stephen Perry Smith Architects is a full-service architecture, planning, interior design, and LEED consulting firm located in Waukesha Wisconsin. The firm is comprised of passionate individuals that support the goals of providing economical and environmentally friendly design to our clients.
Hunzinger Construction Company is a 103-year-old, third-generation, family-owned business deeply rooted in tradition and dedication. Hunzinger is an experienced construction management, general contracting, and design/build firm. As one of the oldest contracting firms in the Midwest, our company delivers quality, stability, and experience. All of our project management, pre-construction and estimating staff are LEED Accredited Professionals.