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Washington, after the storm–a situation dreaded by all facility managers

Washington, after the storm–a situation dreaded by all facility managers

From today’s Washington Post… Beneath a Treasure of Documents, a Stinky MessCrews at Archives Race Against MildewBy Paul SchwartzmanWashington Post Staff WriterFriday, June 30, 2006; Page A01 The chief archivist of the United States of America immediately seized on a single, all-important question when an aide woke him at 1:40 a.m. Monday to report massive flooding at the National Archives.Are the Charters of Freedom safe? Allen Weinstein asked groggily, referring to that venerable trio of documents: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Not to worry, the aide assured. The papers were dry in their vaults near the rotunda where they are normally displayed to legions of people who travel from all over to see them. Emerging from a deep sleep in his Bethesda bedroom, Weinstein came to realize that the problem was in the building’s basement. Tens of thousands of gallons of water had gushed in from Constitution Avenue, knocking out transformers that power the building’s lights and air conditioning. Four days after the deluge, the Archives remained dark and airless as officials took a small army of reporters and television crews on a tour of the damage, which they say will cost $2 million to repair. Only three years ago, the Archives completed a $100 million renovation. To read TFM‘s article about this project, see “Like Building A Ship In A Bottle.”


Furniture donation goes prime time

Furniture donation goes prime time

OfficeMax recently donated furniture, technology, medical equipment, as well as school and office supplies to two “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” episodes, helping a Biloxi, MS medical center damaged by Hurricane Katrina and a girl whose leukemia necessitated an in-home learning center. Before the storm, The Coastal Community Health Center was a community cornerstone, providing health care to those without insurance or the means to pay for health care. The storm flooded the clinic from floor to ceiling, destroying it and forcing the center’s staff to provide services out of a trailer. With the assistance of “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” the Biloxi community now has a fully functioning health center. The episode aired on ABC on March 23, 2006. “Our hearts go out to everyone impacted by Hurricane Katrina, and OfficeMax is glad that it could make a difference by contributing to a health center that is doing so much good for a community that has suffered so much,” said Ryan Vero, chief merchandising officer at OfficeMax. OfficeMax also worked with “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” to donate school supplies and computers to the Kubena family’s in-home learning center. As a result of seven-year old Tara Kubena’s leukemia relapse and bone marrow transplant, doctors insisted she live within certain strict environmental conditions. Because the Kubena’s trailer was no longer a suitable home for the recovering girl, “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” built a house that provides a healthy environment for Tara and her family. Since Tara will be home-schooled, a learning center was included in the home. This “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” episode aired on Feb. 20, 2006. OfficeMax vendors that assisted OfficeMax in contributing to “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” include: 3M, ePocrates, The Global Group, La-Z-Boy, Safeco and Sharps. OfficeMax took charity work prime time by donating furniture, technology, medical equipment and office supplies to “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” helping a medical center damaged by Hurricane Katrina. OfficeMax employee David Bieller stands in front of The Coastal Community Health Center in Biloxi, Miss. after personally delivering donated items to the construction site.


Infrared Training Center Schedule for 2006 and 2007

Infrared Training Center Schedule for 2006 and 2007

The latest listing of fully certified infrared training courses offered by the Infrared Training Center (ITC) is now available. The courses, held at the ITC headquarters facility located a few miles north of Boston and in twenty-three other cities in the United States, Canada, and South America, offer infrared training programs, including Level I, II, and III Predictive Maintenance (PdM) Thermography, Research and Development, and applications courses in building science, roofing, and electrical and mechanical inspection. All ITC Course Certifications meet or exceed ASNT (American Society for Non-Destructive Testing) SNT-TC-1A guidelines. Level I and Level II courses are recognized by NETA (International Electrical Testing Association, an accredited standards developer for the American National Standards Institute, ANSI). ITC is the only ISO-9001 certified infrared training organization worldwide, and is the only factory-authorized training organization for FLIR, Agema, and Inframetrics cameras. ITC instructors are ASNT NDT and PdM TIR Level III certified and have extensive field experience. For the complete course schedule and registration information as well as information on InfraMation, the infrared industry’s premier annual Thermographers’ Conference sponsored by ITC (October 23-27 , Las Vegas, Nevada), contact Betty Taylor at (800) 254-0631, or visit http://www.infraredtraining.com/courses. For Courses in Canada please contact Nancy Edwards at (800) 613-0507 ext. 24 Located a few miles north of Boston, Massachusetts, the ITC headquarters facility offers infrared training programs including Level I, II, and III Predictive Maintenance (PdM) Thermography, Research and Development, and applications courses in roofing, building sciences, and electrical and substation infrared inspections. Fore more information contact us at 866-TRAINIR or visit www.infraredtraining.com . To register for courses, contact Betty Taylor at (800) 254-0631.


Friday Funny: Ambiguous signs from the Department of Homeland Security

Friday Funny: Ambiguous signs from the Department of Homeland Security

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has created a helpful site for facility managers called READYBusiness. This resource has some excellent planning tools for fire safety, medical emergencies, cyber security, and many other threats to business continuity; it has also created some rather ambiguous signs that are supposed to instruct people how to respond to emergency situations. Film site, TheBoxedSet.com has provided a few sample “interpretations” that are not politically correct, but they are amusing… (Just think about how ridiculous the “duck and cover” concept of the 1950s and 1960s was as a response to nuclear war!) If you have set yourself on fire, do not run. If you spot terrorism, blow your anti-terrorism whistle. If you are Vin Diesel, yell really loud. If you spot a terrorist arrow, pin it against the wall with your shoulder. If you are sprayed with an unknown substance, stand and think about itinstead of seeing a doctor. Use your flashlight to lift the walls right off of you! Hurricanes, animal corpses and the biohazard symbol have a lot in common. Think about it. If a door is closed, karate chop it open. After exposure to radiation it is important to consider that you mayhave mutated to gigantic dimensions: watch your head. If you hear the Backstreet Boys, Michael Bolton or Yanni on the radio, cower in the corner or run like hell. If your lungs and stomach start talking, stand with your arms outstretched until they stop. If you lose a contact lens during a chemical attack, do not stop to look for it. Do not drive a station wagon if a power pole is protruding from the hood. A one-inch thick piece of plywood should be sufficient protection against radiation.


LBJ Wildflower Center Helps Green Local Mall

LBJ Wildflower Center Helps Green Local Mall

The Circle C Ranch, near Austin, TX, is a planned community of approximately 12,000 people, and one of the most environmentally sensitive communities in the United States, according to Laurie Swan, Vice President of Stratus Properties, developers of the community. A prized community to live in, Circle C previously lacked one important element: there were few places to shop- even for a cup of coffee. Stratus corrected this by developing a village style retail center that also housed the town’s first Starbucks. The company also believed this was an opportune time to test the effectiveness of a Green roof and push the environmental envelope all at the same time. Swan turned to the nearby Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center for help with the project. “They brought in an environmental designer who suggested we install a modular Green roof system developed by GreenGrid, a business of Weston Solutions,” says Swan. With this system, modules filled with soil and plant media are pre-assembled at a nursery and then laid out on top of the existing roof. “The whole process took just a couple of days,” says Swan. Along with being attractive, there are several tangible benefits to a Green roof. “One immediate benefit is reduced utility costs,” says Swan. “The Green roof helps keep the mall cool during the summer and warm in winter. And the city is testing to see how effective the Green roof is in reducing storm water runoff.” Stratus Properties wanted to do something special with this retail center because it is located in such an environmentally sensitive area. And installing a Green roof helps make it Greener from the top down.


Johnson Controls Receives Supplier Award From AT&T

Johnson Controls Receives Supplier Award From AT&T

Johnson Controls, Inc., headquartered in Milwaukee, WI, was recently recognized as an outstanding supplier to AT&T Inc., provider of data, voice, wireless and Internet services. “We are proud of our longstanding tradition of providing unparalleled products and services to our business and residential customers,” said Maureen Merkle, president, AT&T Procurement. “We’re successful on that front in large part thanks to supplier partners like Johnson Controls that consistently go above and beyond the call of duty.” Johnson Controls received one of 49 supplier recognition awards for its work in helping AT&T deliver outstanding service to its customers during the past year. The company was recognized for its contributions in the Customer Service category. “While excellence is something we strive for with every client, it is truly an honor to be recognized for delivering on that mission. I am proud of our team’s efforts in meeting AT&T’s expectations through our integrated real estate and facilities management offering,” said Paul Bedborough, vice president and general manager, Johnson Controls. As part of its annual supplier recognition program, AT&T took out a half-page ad in the June 7, 2006, edition of The Wall Street Journal to publicly thank the selected companies. In March, Johnson Controls’ services were recognized by another client, Intel Corporation, with a Preferred Quality Supplier (PQS) award for outstanding performance in providing products and services deemed essential to Intel’s success. Johnson Controls is the world’s largest global real estate and facilities management business offering a single-source for real estate portfolio management, design and project management, strategic consulting, energy and facilities management services.


Johnson Controls Receives Supplier Award From AT&T

Johnson Controls Receives Supplier Award From AT&T

Johnson Controls, Inc., headquartered in Milwaukee, WI, was recently recognized as an outstanding supplier to AT&T Inc., provider of data, voice, wireless and Internet services. “We are proud of our longstanding tradition of providing unparalleled products and services to our business and residential customers,” said Maureen Merkle, president, AT&T Procurement. “We’re successful on that front in large part thanks to supplier partners like Johnson Controls that consistently go above and beyond the call of duty.” Johnson Controls received one of 49 supplier recognition awards for its work in helping AT&T deliver outstanding service to its customers during the past year. The company was recognized for its contributions in the Customer Service category. “While excellence is something we strive for with every client, it is truly an honor to be recognized for delivering on that mission. I am proud of our team’s efforts in meeting AT&T’s expectations through our integrated real estate and facilities management offering,” said Paul Bedborough, vice president and general manager, Johnson Controls. As part of its annual supplier recognition program, AT&T took out a half-page ad in the June 7, 2006, edition of The Wall Street Journal to publicly thank the selected companies. In March, Johnson Controls’ services were recognized by another client, Intel Corporation, with a Preferred Quality Supplier (PQS) award for outstanding performance in providing products and services deemed essential to Intel’s success. Johnson Controls is the world’s largest global real estate and facilities management business offering a single-source for real estate portfolio management, design and project management, strategic consulting, energy and facilities management services.


SMART BUILDINGS, a new book by Jim Sinopoli

SMART BUILDINGS, a new book by Jim Sinopoli

Smart buildings are a significant trend in both technology and real estate development. Major technology companies such as Cisco Systems have created “connected” real estate groups to focus on the needs of the emerging market. Business media entities such as The Wall Street Journal have identified smart buildings as an important trend in the construction and real estate development sectors. For TFM‘s most recent coverage of this topic, see “Planning For Integrated Building Services.” Jim Sinopoli has used his 25 years of experience in technology consulting and engineering to create a “how to” book for designing and operating the multitude of systems involved in today’s new buildings. Smart Buildings (ISBN: 0-9786144-0-2), just released by Spicewood Publishing, is a practical guide for architects, engineers, developers, contractors and design consultants. The book covers the basic design foundations, technology and management systems encompassing a smart building framework. The basis for smart buildings is a handful of technical standards that are ubiquitous within computer networks. Those standards are in the process of dominating the marketplace, as evidenced by their use in telephones (VoIP) and video surveillance systems. Other technology systems in a building such are lighting control, heating, ventilation and air conditioning are also evolving to those standards. These prominent standards are coalescing to become integral components in the smart building deployment. Primary reasons for building a smart building are related to cost savings in construction and operation, and the improved functionality that comes with system integration. Simply put the building managers, support staff and tenants can do more with lower costs, greater efficiencies and heightened technological capabilities. “Technology always has and always will influence the buildings we build. The convergence of communications networks within our buildings is a significant technological and building transformation.” says Jim Sinopoli. He plans to follow up Smart Buildings with handbooks for specific types of buildings, including schools, hospitals and office buildings. Smart Buildings can be ordered by e-mail at orders@smart-buildings.com. For over 25 years, Sinopoli has worked extensively on projects involving the configuration and optimization of technology systems and networks. He is an industry expert, speaker and continuing education provider. Sinopoli has received the international Harry J. Pfister award from the Building Industry Consulting Service International (BICSI). His experience includes clients in the health care, corporate, education, manufacturing, finance, construction and government industry sectors. Sinopoli is a licensed Professional Engineer and a Registered Communications Distribution Designer.


2006 Experience Exchange Report now available from BOMA

2006 Experience Exchange Report now available from BOMA

Want to know what led to Net Operating Income decreases in the U.S. office market in 2005? Curious how much companies are spending on building utilities and other expenses? Wonder what cities have the highest total income per rentable square foot? Wonder what cities have the lowest? This information and much more is now available in the newly released Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International 2006 Experience Exchange Report (EER). The 2006 EER made its debut at the BOMA International North American Commercial Real Estate Congress® and The Office Building Show in Dallas, Texas, June 24-27. This newest edition of the EER is the most robust in years, representing more than 5,000 buildings in 124 cities across North America and more than 1 billion square feet of office space. Now in its 86th year, the EER continues to be the singular, most detailed, and most reputable source of benchmarking data representing the office building industry across North America. “The benchmarking data in the BOMA International Experience Exchange Report is second to none, said BOMA International Chairman and Chief Elected Officer David W. Hewett, RPA, CPM, CCIM, FMA, CFM, principal for Trammell Crow Company, Auburn Hills, Michigan. “It is the most comprehensive report of its kind, and is a must-have for commercial real estate professionals who want to compare office building financial data and operations information from different markets.” The EER is available in a traditional book version and an electronic CD version that gives users the advantages of the book plus access to all of the data used to determine the special studies section, including city specific information on medical office buildings and corporate facilities. The CD version also allows for the breakout of market specific data in more than 124 markets and the creation of reports (exportable to Excel and PDF formats) based on specific income and expense line-items for cross-market comparisons. The EER represents data for the U.S. and Canada and is further broken down into private and public sector buildings. It also provides readers with a diverse collection of data analyses ranging from national cross-tabulations and special building data tabulations to city analyses. For each metropolitan area, the data is further broken down into location (downtown or suburban), submarket (where data permits), and size analyses. All data is presented in dollars per square foot, per year based on the income and expense dollars incurred during the calendar/fiscal year 2005. Summary and detail information is provided for both income and expenses. For further information on the Experience… …Read More…


NCQLP Approves Online Training From Universal Lighting

NCQLP Approves Online Training From Universal Lighting

Three online training courses offered by Universal Lighting in its award-winning e-Learning Center are now NCQLP approved for LEU credit. The National Council on Qualifications for the Lighting Professions, or NCQLP, is a non-profit organization that evaluates the educational opportunities available to lighting professionals. NCQLP members are required to earn continuing education credits called LEUs (Lighting Education Units) in order to maintain their certification. Online courses available through Universal Lighting’s e-Learning Center include Fluorescent Ballast Basics I & II and Fundamentals of HID Lighting. All three of these courses have been approved by the NCQLP for education credits. Certified professionals who successfully complete one or more of these courses will receive a certificate that can be submitted to the NCQLP for LEUs. The e-Learning Center is designed to educate lighting contractors, distributors and end users about the latest lighting technology for versatility, function, and energy savings. Enrollment in the program is free, and each course is divided into four user-friendly classes. Students simply click their way through the class and then take a quiz at the end to make sure they understand the material. Universal Lighting earned a 2006 “Best of the Best” Award from TED magazine for its e-Learning Center. The NCQLP is a non-profit organization founded in 1991 to serve and protect the well-being of the public through effective and efficient lighting practice. Through a peer-review process, the NCQLP establishes the education, experience and examination requirements for baseline certification across the lighting professions. Headquartered in Nashville, Tenn., with operations and distribution worldwide, Universal Lighting Technologies is focused on designing, manufacturing, and distributing lighting ballasts and controls.