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Award Season: AIA COTE Picks Their 2011 Top Ten

26 April 2011 | Posted By Jeff Cole 1,622 views No Comment

Every year, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Committee on the Environment (COTE) invites submission of projects for selection among the top ten green projects of the year. Sustainability bragging rights are awarded to these select projects, based upon a comprehensive, balanced set of measures and metrics, including a category near and dear to BetterBricks: Energy Flows & Energy Future.

This category evaluates candidate projects using the following metrics:

  • How the building design reduces heating, cooling, lighting, and water heating loads
  • How the design and integration of building systems facilitates energy conservation and reduces use of fossil fuels, green house gas emissions and other pollution, and improves building performance and comfort
  • Techniques for systems integration, use of controls and technologies, efficient lighting strategies
  • Use of on-site renewable and alternative energy systems
  • Anticipation of future and carbon neutral fuel sources
  • Strategies to reduce peak electrical demand
  • How the building or parts of the building provide “passive survivability” the ability to function in the event of power outages or interruptions in fuel supply

Two Pacific Northwest projects are among the 10 recently selected for 2011 recognition.

The LOTT Clean Water Alliance Regional Service Center is a 32,500 ft2 laboratory, office and interpretive center, anchoring an urban revitalization initiative in Olympia, Washington. Methane generated form the plant waste treatment process fuels a co-generation plant, providing electricity and heat. This heat is utilized by a low-temperature water loop connected to water source heat pumps in a manner that eliminates the need for a boiler, cooling tower, or geothermal field. Motorized louvers on the west facade prevent direct sun from penetrating into the building during sunny summer days, while welcoming solar gains and daylight during winter months. The building is expected to deliver energy savings of approximately 60 percent over an ASHRAE 90.1 base case.

The Vancouver Convention Centre West is a 1.2 million ft2 convention center. The building employs a water source heat pump system that benefits from the relatively constant temperature of sea water, to increase heating and cooling efficiency. The ventilation system incorporates both heat recovery into major ventilation systems and a low-pressure fan system that reduces fan energy requirements. Radiant heating and cooling serves the exhibition halls and pre-function areas, allowing a reduction in ventilation system capacity. Daylighting sensors and lighting occupancy sensors reduce lighting loads. This facility is expected to use 60 percent less energy that the existing Vancouver Convention Centre (East).

Learn more about these two projects, including members of the project teams, at http://www.aiatopten.org/hpb/. Details are available about all ten projects.

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