Architects Promote NIBS Performance-Based Guide

Posted by Heidi SchwartzNational Performance Based Design Guide

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has announced it has agreed to support a new performance-based guide developed by the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS). The National Performance-Based Design Guide (NPBDG) is the first broad reaching performance-based tool for use by facility owners and building industry professionals.

Based on the recently updated U.S. General Services Administration P100: Facilities Standards for the Public Buildings Service, the NPBDG offers four levels of building performance, from “Baseline” performance as the lowest permissible level (commensurate with minimum code requirements) through to “Tier 3 High Performance,” the highest level or stretch goal. The format allows the building owner to work with the design team to select the preferred level to design the building in order to prioritize performance opportunities that stem from climate, site, program, mandates and other conditions.

During the development stage, the NIBS High Performance Building Council, which oversees the project, distributed the pre-release version to a number of industry associations. The AIA will support the Guide by promoting it to its members as a resource to be used in the design phase of a building as well as by bringing the designer community perspective to the NPBDG review and update process.

“The National Performance-Based Design Guide has the potential to improve design outcomes by helping the owner and designer have substantive discussions about the owner’s requirements and expectations early in the planning process,” said AIA CEO Robert Ivy, FAIA.

“The design community plays a crucial role in achieving high-performance buildings,” said National Institute of Building Sciences President Henry L. Green, Hon. AIA. “The National Performance-Based Design Guide provides this important segment of the building industry with a tool to help meet new benchmarks using a performance-based approach. Having the support of AIA is critical to getting the industry engaged in seeking performance-based outcomes.”

ASHRAE, the first organization to sign on to support the NPBDG, has assumed responsibility for the review of the NPBDG Mechanical Section. The National Institute of Building Sciences encourages other trade and professional societies to become involved in this important effort.

View the National Performance Based Design Guide online.