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Touring the Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Office Building

31 March 2011 | Posted By Elaine Miller 10,145 views No Comment

Edith Green Wendell Wyatt Building TourAfter wowing over 300 guests at the Portland BetterBricks Awards, Kevin Kampschroer, Director of the Office of Federal High Performance Green Buildings for the U.S. General Service Administration (GSA), was invited by SERA Architects and NEEA’s BetterBricks initiative to tour the extensive energy efficient renovation of GSA’s Edith Green Wendell Wyatt (EGWW)building.

Completed in 1974, the Edith Green Wendell Wyatt Building was targeted to receive America Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funding in 2009, opening the door to a deep energy retrofit of the building. The combination of requirements as a result of receiving the ARRA funding and new Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) legislation set the bar extremely high for the building’s energy efficiency goals.

Energy Efficiency Targets of the Retrofit

  • ENERGY STAR® score of 97
  • 20% indoor potable water reduction
  • 50% outdoor potable water reduction
  • 55% fossil fuel reduction
  • 30% energy use reduction
  • 30% solar thermal generation
  • Required LEED Gold certification

Energy-Saving Measures Recommended by the Design Team

  • Radiant heating and cooling
  • Exterior shading
  • Energy efficient lighting
  • Glass U-value
  • Wall U-value
  • Daylighting

With the included recommendations for the renovation, and with support from the Energy Trust of Oregon and technical assistance by NEEA’s BetterBricks through the Energy Studies in Buildings Lab, EGWW is expected to have an Energy Use Index (EUI) of 33-38. An impressive goal, as the original building’s EUI was 77-83 and the national average for commercial buildings is 94.

Green Lease Requirements Add to Significant Energy Savings

Energy consumption will also be monitored through tenants’ green leases, which for EGWW include:

  • An energy budget
  • A water budget
  • Office equipment standards
  • Shared break rooms
  • Temperature requirements for heating and cooling the office space.

Estimated annual energy costs savings are significant, which will come from tenants eliminating personal appliances, using task lighting and lower lighting levels, employing power management strategies, minimizing enclosed office space at the perimeter of the building and adjusting the temperature settings.

Regulated Tenant Improvements Support Sustainability Goals

These include:

  • 70% of net usable space must be open office
  • The interiors must be light colors for maximum reflection
  • Lighting cannot exceed 35 watts/sq ft
  • All appliances must be ENERGY STAR® appliances

Additional sustainability practices for the building include: implementing sustainable purchasing; green cleaning practices; setting computers and printers to turn off; using non-disposable cups; eliminating individual trash bins; mandatory composting and implementing transportation policies.

We will continue to keep you posted on the progress of this impressive existing building renewal. For more information on the topic visit Rocky Mountain Institute’s new RetroFit Depot: www.retrofitdepot.org.


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