The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) is studying renovation of its headquarters to showcase sustainability.
“The proposed renovation of our current headquarters would incorporate ASHRAE technology and demonstrate our strong commitment to sustainability,” Lee Burgett, P.E., ASHRAE president, said. “ASHRAE launched an engineering for sustainability movement this past year. The headquarters renovation is another example of ASHRAE’s role as an engineering engine that drives sustainability.”
ASHRAE moved to its current headquarters in Atlanta from New York in 1981. The 31,000-square-foot building houses some 100 employees. Recent inspections indicated that the building, constructed in 1965 and last renovated in 1991, needs substantial repairs. ASHRAE explored several options, including purchasing a new building or leasing.
“The potential beneficial environmental impact gained by refurbishing existing buildings to sustainability standards is far greater than new sustainable buildings,” Burgett said. “Through this project ASHRAE proposes demonstrating that potential.”
The Society’s Board of Directors agreed at its 2006 Winter Meeting to study renovating headquarters into a sustainable building.
ASHRAE would work toward the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environment Design certification for existing buildings (LEED-EB), with a goal of a gold rating.
The Society also plans to demonstrate specific compliance with ASHRAE standards with respect to energy conservation and indoor air quality. Selected ASHRAE technical committees will be brought into the study to determine how the ASHRAE headquarters renovation can become a “living lab” regarding both energy conservation and indoor air quality.
The study is expected to begin by March 2006 with a final decision on renovation due by September 2006.
ASHRAE’s move toward a sustainable headquarters continues with hiring of a construction manager and creation of a technical advisory committee.
ASHRAE currently is studying whether to renovate its headquarters in Atlanta as a sustainable building. Gay Construction Co., a commercial construction company in Smyrna, Ga., will serve as construction manager for the project.
“Gay Construction Company is proud to join the project team as general contractor,” said L. Tom Gay, president of Gay Construction Co. “ASHRAE is known industry wide for setting the standards of performance in the mechanical field. The renewed ASHRAE building will also define its leadership role for integrating building sustainability principles and environmentally responsible construction. It will be exciting.”
Also to ensure the technical expertise of its 55,000 members is included, ASHRAE has created a Technical Advisory Ad
Hoc Committee that will provide input into the project requirements for the renovation.
The committee members represent architectural features, mechanical systems, lighting/day lighting, controls, Leadership in Energy Efficiency Design (LEED) or equivalent building rating systems, indoor environmental quality, energy, operation and maintenance/commissioning, and living laboratory.
More information about the project can be found at www.ashrae.org/building, including photos of the building throughout the years, technical information about the building and a comments area.
A schematic design is scheduled to be completed by June with discussion by ASHRAE’s Board of Directors taking place at the 2006 Annual Meeting, June 24-28, Quebec City.