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Full back issues of Facility Executive and Today's Facility Manager magazines are featured here. Publication articles are listed in a clickable Table of Contents. Facility Executive magazine covers all aspects of construction projects, modernization and ongoing operations for commercial buildings and facilities. Also view our Digital Issues.

Facility Executive | January / February 2016 Issue

Facility Executive Magazine. January-February Cover. 2016.

Facility Executive: January / February 2016

Facility Executive January / February 2016 IssueVolume 29, Number 1

Tech And FM: Cyber Security In Real Estate | Facility executives should note several risks, remedies, and misconceptions about cyber risk to building systems.

Assessing Cleaning Performance | With occupant satisfaction in mind, key performance indicators for quality maintenance include appearance and health.

Facility Executive of the Year 2016 | In Hamilton County, OH, Ralph W. Linne, director of county facilities, tames management tasks with technology and shapes a long-term energy plan.

2016 Readers’ Choice Awards | In this annual survey, readers cast their votes for the suppliers they preferred in 2015.

Analyzing Payback Of Roofing Insulation | Model energy codes are calling for higher R-values in commercial building envelopes. Plus, have you heard of induction welding?

Retrocommissioning HVAC | Deferred maintenance directly affects the physical condition of a facility which has a significant impact on the asset value.

Renewable Energy: Partnership To Renew Higher Ed | Higher ed’s AASHE launches energy initiative for campuses—purchase one gigawatt of renewables by 2020.

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Fastening Systems For Single Ply Roofing

Fastening Systems For Single Ply Roofing
Fastening Systems For Single Ply Roofing
With the induction system, fasteners and plates are installed in a grid pattern. This helps distribute the wind load and enables higher wind performance ratings with fewer fasteners. (Images: OMG Roofing Products)

By Chris Mader
From the January/February 2016 Issue

Today’s facility managers have essentially three options when it comes to installing a new single-ply roofing system. The roofing system can be fully adhered, fully ballasted or mechanically attached. Each has pros and cons. White thermoplastic materials represent the highest percentage of new commercial roofs being installed in North America today, and the vast majority of thermoplastic materials are installed using mechanical attachment methods. These single-ply systems include polyvinyl chloride (PVC), thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO), as well as black rubber (EPDM). The material is typically provided in rolls 10′ wide by 100′ long. In a mechanically attached thermoplastic system, the membrane is rolled out over the insulation then fastened with screws and plates along the edge. The next roll overlaps the fasteners and the seam is fused using hot air (900°F+) to create a bond that can be stronger than the membrane itself.

Fully adhered. In a fully adhered system, the membrane is bonded or glued to the substrate. Typically in these assemblies a layer of insulation is mechanically fastened to the structural deck, however, it can also be glued, depending on the deck type. Frequently there are several layers of insulation in the assembly all glued together before the waterproofing cover is adhered to the top level of insulation or cover board. Ironically, fully adhered systems often require more fasteners per 4’x8′ insulation board than mechanically attached systems, and are also dependent on the installation temperature and may be impacted by the humidity levels as well.

Ballasted. By contrast, ballasted systems use stone or paver materials to hold the roofing membrane in place. The roof cover is loose laid over the insulation, which is either mechanically fastened or loose laid in place, and then ballast is installed on top. Historically, ballasted roofs represent the least expensive option. The biggest challenges with these roofs are preventing ballast from scouring during periods of high wind, ensuring that the building can handle the dead load weight of the ballast, and difficulty finding leaks after the fact.

Mechanically attached. The majority of the single-ply materials are mechanically fastened to the structural roof deck using screws and “plates” or oversized washers designed for the application. While the majority of new roof decks in North America are steel, there are many other deck types, including gypsum, concrete and wood, which can all accept mechanically fastened roof systems.

Induction Welding. Rather than relying exclusively on in-seam fastening techniques for mechanically attached thermoplastic membranes, many facilities have had their contractors employ an alternative technology, induction welding. The system, called RhinoBond, is a non-penetrating option for installing TPO and PVC membranes, which spreads the wind load more evenly across the roof deck. Based on microprocessor-controlled induction welding technology, the system significantly limits roof flutter, regardless of membrane width, and reduces the load per installed fastener.

Oversimplified, this technology—accepted by all major roofing system manufacturers—is used to heat a specific metal target through a non-metallic material. In this case, the “target” is a metal plate, coated with a heat-activated adhesive, installed under the TPO or PVC roofing membrane. This process creates a strong bond between the bottom side of the roofing membrane and the coated plate, without penetrating the membrane. In static testing, these bonds have demonstrated the ability to resist more than 500 pounds of force.

Most mechanically attached roofing assemblies are designed around in-seam fastening patterns and are based on a specific wind loads (i.e., Factory Mutual [FM] 1-90). In traditional mechanically attached systems, insulation is secured to roof deck using a specified number of fasteners and insulation plates per square. A second set of fasteners and seam plates or a batten bar is installed through the membrane in the lap or seam, and protected by an overlapping heat-welded seam that eliminates potential entry points for moisture.

With the induction system (see photo above), only one fastener and plate is used to secure both the insulation and the membrane to the deck. As such, the number of required fasteners is reduced by up to 50% depending on the specific wind requirements. Since the grid pattern distributes the wind load more evenly, the system can achieve higher wind performance ratings with fewer fasteners, while complying with the steel deck stress limitations of FM 4470.

For facilities and light manufacturing plants with standing seam metal roofs, the induction system eliminates many issues that roofing contractors find difficult with these types of projects. “I think we came in a couple of hundred thousand dollars less than if we had gone with a metal roof,” says Brent Howell, facility manager for Salmon Bay Center about the Stimson Marina project in Seattle. “If we had done a complete tear-off we were probably looking at another million dollars.”

Fastening Systems For Single Ply RoofingMader is a codes/approvals support engineer for OMG Roofing Products. He is responsible for helping to evaluate new products as well as for developing and maintaining technical product specifications, maintaining code approvals and keeping abreast of technical changes and advancements in the commercial roofing industry. Mader is a member of the NRCA, SPRI and of RCI.

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Analyzing Payback Of Roofing Insulation

Analyzing Payback Of Roofing Insulation

Analyzing Payback Of Roofing InsulationBy Jason P. Wilen, AIA, CDT, RRO
From the January/February 2016 Issue

Model energy codes establish minimum requirements for thermal resistance of building envelopes. Thermal resistance is often measured in R-value, which is a measure of insulation’s ability to resist heat traveling through it. The higher the R-value the better the thermal performance of the insulation is. Model energy codes are adopted by states or local jurisdictions and are sometimes left as-is or are modified by state or local building code agencies to reflect a jurisdiction’s local conditions. The most often-adopted energy code in the U.S. is the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), developed and published by the International Code Council (ICC)

The building envelope thermal requirements in the International Energy Conservation Code, 2012 Edition (IECC 2012) provide prescriptive minimum thermal insulation (R-value) requirements for building envelope components, including roof assemblies.

Comparing IECC 2012’s values to those of the International Energy Conservation Code, 2009 Edition (IECC 2009) reveals minimum required R-values have increased from R-5 to R-10 depending on specific climate zones and building (roof) assembly configurations.

Similarly, comparing the new International Energy Conservation Code, 2015 Edition’s (IECC 2015’s) values to IECC 2012’s Edition, IECC 2015 includes increases of an additional R-5 for some locations.

IECC 2015 was published in mid-2014 and was available to jurisdictions for adoption at that time. The IECC is published every three years, and many locations are still using earlier editions of IECC. If in doubt, facilities should check with their local building departments to find out which version of IECC is in effect in their area.

It is important to note the ICC doesn’t thoroughly consider the cost implication of making its codes more stringent, such as increasing minimum R-value requirements.

A Sample Analysis

The National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) analyzed energy savings and cost paybacks of roof assembly R-value increases in 16 U.S. cities representative of the energy codes’ eight U.S. climate zones (see current map below, click to enlarge).

Analyzing Payback Of Roofing InsulationA hypothetical project consisting of a roof assembly with insulation above deck on a 10,000 square foot single-story building was considered. Construction cost increases and corresponding theoretical energy savings information was developed by changing the hypothetical roof assembly in each city from R-10 to R-15; R-15 to R-20; R-20 to R-25; and R-25 to R-30. City-specific current energy costs (natural gas for heating and electricity for cooling) were used in the analysis. Cost payback length was determined by dividing the incremental increased cost for adding R-value by the calculated energy cost savings.

The analysis revealed that insulation increases from R-10 up to R-15 have the relatively shortest paybacks; these ranged from 12.4 years to 13.3 years. (A 2004 study conducted by The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress revealed the average lifespan for a low-slope roof system in the U.S. is 17.4 years.)

Cost payback lengths vary by a city’s climatic conditions and heating and cooling energy costs. For example, energy costs significantly vary between Boston and Denver, resulting in wide variances in cost paybacks even when comparing cities in the same climate zone.

Considering current heating and cooling costs, NRCA’s analysis concludes R-value increases resulting in cost payback lengths approaching or beyond a roof assembly’s anticipated life span are not financially justifiable to building owners. However, as heating and cooling energy costs increase, shorter cost payback lengths will occur and may better justify the current energy codes’ high minimum R-value requirements.

Interested parties can determine theoretical heating and cooling costs (and savings) for roof assembly configurations in specific cities using NRCA’s EnergyWise Roof Calculator. EnergyWise is a Web-based application that provides a graphical method of construction roof assemblies to evaluate thermal performance and estimated energy cost under normal operation conditions.

The application determines “Annual Energy Cost” values, which is useful when comparing the energy costs and savings associated with various roof assembly designs. This value should not be confused with the building owner’s overall energy costs, which in most instances will be somewhat larger than the “Annual Energy cost” that is attributable to the roof assembly only.

For a detained financial analysis of the long-term costs and potential savings of an energy efficient roof system, it is prudent to consult an experienced accountant.

NRCA’s Conclusions

NRCA considers a roof assembly’s thermal performance to be an important attribute to overall performance. However, based on NRCA’s analysis, in many instances the energy codes’ current high minimum R-value requirements do not provide building owners and operators adequate energy cost savings to justify additional construction costs.

NRCA cautions against making representations of cost savings that can result from adding high insulation R-values.

NRCA recommends roof assembly designers provide designs that comply with the minimum requirements for the specific energy code applicable in the jurisdiction where a building is located.

Final Thoughts

As state and local jurisdictions consider updating their energy codes, facility executives and other stakeholders have an opportunity to contribute to the discussion. Generally, there is a public comment phase during the energy code update process. Meanwhile, an online resource from NRCA lists, by state, which energy codes have been adopted here.

In November 2014, the NRCA published an industry issue update for its members that analyzed energy savings and cost paybacks stemming from energy code mandated increases in R-values for low-slope roof assemblies.

These findings and NRCA’s conclusions are summarized in a document that can be found online.

Also, because insulation is a significant component of roof systems, facility executives should consider asking their roof system designers to use cover boards between roof membranes and rigid roof insulation in their low-slope roof assemblies in order to protect insulation and to enhance overall system performance.

Analyzing Payback Of Roofing InsulationWilen is director of technical services at the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA). He joined the NRCA staff in 2011 after 18 years with architectural, forensic, and roof consulting firms. Wilen holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, and is a licensed architect in Illinois. Wilen is currently a member of two ASHRAE committees as well as being active with a number of ASTM International committees.

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Assessing Cleaning Performance

Assessing Cleaning Performance.
Assessing Cleaning Performance.
Equipment for complete removal of contaminants should be part of a commercial cleaning toolbox. (Photo: Kaivac, Inc.)

By Allen Rathey
From the January/February 2016 Issue

Lewis Carroll stated, “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.” While some people might say a good cleaning program, like a good life, is a journey not a destination, almost everyone agrees it is important to set practical goals. This article addresses setting cleaning performance goals in the context of business objectives through cleaning performance assessment, and tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) or metrics.

According to Chris Arlen, president of Service Performance, a consulting firm based in Bainbridge Island, WA, “Key performance indicators can provide an essential baseline for assessing and improving cleaning performance.”

Arlen likens KPIs to key cockpit readings of legacy Boeing 747s: “In older Boeing 747s, if all the instrumentation were taken out of the cockpit and laid end-to-end it would stretch over 27 feet in length. Pilots couldn’t pay attention to all those dials and displays all the time. Instead, they viewed six key indicators. If something appeared out of order, pilots checked the other instruments corresponding to that key indicator. The same is true for cleaning KPIs.”

Cleaning performance metrics, or KPIs, can include:

  • Appearance Metric
  • Customer Satisfaction Metric
  • Fiscal Metric
  • Sanitizing, IAQ Metric
  • Health Metric

These KPIs or metrics can be part of a Cleaning Performance Assessment (CPA), a customized assessment based on individual facility requirements.

Cleaning Performance Metrics: The Customer-centric View

Certainly, what occupants see and observe throughout a facility is a vital KPI , so a good place to start evaluating as it relates to the cleaning procedures that are in practice.

1. Appearance Metric. Does it look “clean” on a scale from one to 10 based on a survey of the customer or tenant? This metric is no more complicated than that. While this is indeed subjective, the nature of occupants’ perceptions is subjective; they will judge the quality of the cleaning based on what they see and smell. This metric measures these impressions in a fair and objective way by averaging the viewpoint of perhaps 25% of the users of a facility, plus that of the third-party visitor, auditor, or assessor (via an unannounced visit). One approach to solicit feedback: make this a mini selective crowdsourcing process via online surveys.

According to cleaning performance and science advocate, Bob Robinson, Sr., founder of Kaivac, “While ‘cleaning for appearance’ is an obvious goal, science tells us that just because a facility looks and smells clean, it is not always clean, safe and healthy. Tools that enable more complete removal of contaminants, visible and invisible—and productively—should be part of the cleaning performance arsenal.”

2. Customer Satisfaction Metric. On a scale from one to 10, is the customer happy with the cleaning and the cleaning staff’s responsiveness to input or complaints? Which areas need improvement? Which areas shine?

3. Fiscal Metric. This calls for evaluating the “dollars and cents” data, and this includes the following:

  • Overall cost of cleaning (the basis is not subjective and should hinge on cost per cleanable square foot). Standardizing cleaning processes and tools most affects this metric.
  • Square feet cleaned per full-time custodial worker.
  • Asset preservation. Clean surfaces last longer, so develop factors to measure this as part of the cleaning performance matrix. Ask vendors to provide data on the durability of products and surfaces (e.g., floors) when kept clean (or not), then factor replacement costs and intervals for well-maintained or poorly-maintained assets.

4. Sanitizing/IAQ Metric. Create an average score based on the “healthiness” of the facility cleaning based on a) occupant and auditor walk-through surveys, and b) average daily attendance numbers, where available.

The “healthiness” of a facility is also based on average ATP post-cleaning numbers (perhaps using ISSA’s Clean Standard as a guide). ATP measures organic or germ-promoting soil or average settled dust levels. This can be gravimetric (e.g., the weight of dust samples taken using a white glove-like capture swab across 10 standardized dust collection point), or initially visual (e.g., “I can draw an ‘X’ in the dust, so this is a zero to 3 score”).

Settled dust levels are an indicator of what is airborne and inhalable. Lower levels of settled dust equate to lower levels of airborne dust as a possible trigger of asthma and allergies. Again, while customer perception is subjective, human visual acuity, olfactory, and other senses are quite sensitive and can detect dust, odor, and other contaminants without the need for scientific devices. This perception, when averaged across enough users of the facility and unannounced third-party audits, can contribute to the accurate “sense” of clean and healthy, with more scientific assessments, pending further development of the Clean Standard and related efforts from ISSA, a cleaning industry trade association.

Involving operations staff in discussion of HVAC filtration and other indoor environmental factors enables deeper collaboration for cleaner, healthier environments.

5. Health Metric. While anecdotal data supports the belief that better cleaning promotes health, hard data associated with cleaning (e.g., reducing absenteeism) is harder to pinpoint because of confounding variables, such as ventilation, individual differences among people, and pre-existing conditions. It only makes sense that a cleaner indoor environment supports better health, attendance, and productivity.

ISSA’s Clean Standard makes the point that less germ-promoting soil as measured by lower ATP levels means fewer points of disease transmission, and conditions conducive to better health.

The health metric needs a disclaimer that it is not a scientific measurement, but reflects occupant and auditor impressions and sensibilities.

According to Rex Morrison, founder of the 501c3, Process Cleaning for Healthy Schools, “Complete removal of soil by standardizing the right tasks and tools is the path to performance benefits, and a carefully crafted process minimizes labor, maximizes ergonomics, addresses bottom-line needs, and protects health.”

Tracking KPIs

For the Appearance and Customer Satisfaction metrics, facility management staff might survey monthly (on a one to 10, or similar, scale) using tools as simple as online survey platforms (like SurveyMonkey). This can produce a basic numerical average to improve upon and track over time.

Fiscal metrics can include direct comparisons of costs between current programs and new ones. For examples, facility management might compare use of specialists equipped with standardized tools, techniques, and precise work loading, versus generalists carrying on business as usual.

Or this may include tracking the reduction of floor stripping costs when floors are regularly vacuumed versus dust mopped (proper vacuuming removes more soil).

This practice can also include measuring electricity savings when cleaning is performed during the day versus at night.

Fiscal metrics regarding asset preservation may involve determining the replacement cycle for carpet that is regularly maintained versus carpet cleaned only when it appears soiled.

Evaluating for Sanitizing/IAQ and Health metrics may include the reduction of ATP levels measured using a luminometer, reduced average airborne particle counts, sampling for allergens using test kits provided by labs such as InBio, and subjective occupant perceptions of health and well-being (related to satisfaction as “value” can be a perception).

Cleaning productivity is not just the speed of cleaning or cleaning staff, but the ability to deliver on the five metrics within agreed-upon resource constraints and/or other parameters.

Assessing Cleaning Performance.Rathey is a 30 year veteran of the facilities sector, specializing in promoting clean, healthy indoor environments. He is president of the Healthy Facilities Institute based in Boise, ID.

To share your thoughts on this topic, please visit the Comments area below.

Cyber Security In Real Estate

Cyber Security In Real Estate
Cyber Security In Real Estate
Begin to improve cyber security of building systems by having five key areas evaluated. (Image: Intelligent Buildings, LLC)

By Tom Shircliff and Rob Murchison
From the January/February 2016 Issue

With headlines of cyber attacks on victims ranging from bank cards and Target to a Hollywood movie studio, the issue of cyber security has become top of mind. Now the real estate industry is awakening to significant cyber security risks for building monitor and control equipment. With systems such as HVAC, lighting, fire alarms, sprinkler systems, and elevators all using information technology (IT) such as computers, servers, operating systems, protocols, and networking including Internet connectivity, it’s not hard to imagine an array of scary scenarios. A hacker could manipulate HVAC and CRAC systems to damage temperature-sensitive equipment, disable elevators or life safety systems, or even “hop over” to attack corporate computer networks—not to mention lost productivity and brand damage. These remotely accessible controls systems create a massive amount of exposure for the real estate industry in many different environments, including commercial office, corporate office, campus, retail, industrial, and others.

However, to correct a common misconception, the exposure is not because of the more recent smart buildings revolution. Rather it’s the so-called “dumb buildings” built over the past 25 years with standard controls systems that have these inherent risks but have not employed any cyber-safe requirements. The standard controls systems and the contractors installing them use Internet-connected computers for remote maintenance and software updates. In addition to adding convenience, this also creates a dangerous pathway to the building, its controls systems, occupants, and other networks.

You can’t buy a control system without a computer server and remote access capability, and almost all of these systems have been installed by different vendors with different standards—with little or no concern for cyber security. An estimated 95% of building systems connected to the Internet have insecure connections, and 65% of vendors have remote access to building systems.

Let’s look deeper at why the real estate industry is vulnerable. Use of IT in controls architecture and the back office has outpaced the technology abilities of the typical industry vendor resources, such as architects, engineers, and facility and property managers. These vendors generally have not integrated current-day IT practices into the design, construction and operation standards, while at the same time real estate developers and owners have not aligned their internal departments to the new reality of IT in monitor and control systems. The result is just enough IT to connect and turn on systems—and systems that are each put in by different vendors to different IT standards for reliability, backup, cyber, and other critical IT principles.

There are many examples of contractors who are establishing remote connectivity using low-cost, off-the-shelf routers, with free Wi-Fi built in that is constantly broadcasting, and simply plugging in a DSL line without changing the generic password (such as “admin admin”). Multiply that times dozens of vendors who have different systems installed throughout the building(s).

Part of the reason the industry has been slow to respond to the risks is rooted in historically different approaches between IT and facilities management. In most enterprise IT environments, the owner has control of all IT devices and networks even if using contractors for certain tasks and equipment. But in the real estate and facilities environment, there is a large ecosystem of vendors that almost completely controls and manages all of the IT components themselves and are responsible only for their own level of IT reliability and security.

To bridge these cultural differences, mediation and even language interpretation between the departments is often necessary to explain what facilities is trying to do and then to integrate the organization’s IT requirements into facilities procurement and management. Typical questions to resolve are: Who buys the software, facilities management or IT? Who determines the requirements? How sensitive is the data? What are the remote access policies and requirements? Who manages compliance? Whose budget is it coming out of?

The first step toward more cyber-secure facilities is an inventory and vulnerability assessment. This requires skill sets in several areas, including facility management, IT, controls systems, and risk management. For example, our firm, Intelligent Buildings, has developed a scorecard (shown above) that applies existing IT best practices from National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST) Risk Security Framework (RSF) and International Organization for Standardization (ISO) as well as the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and then grafted those best practices into the facility environment. The evaluation areas include the computer systems, controls software and hardware, networking, contractor practices, and internal practices.

It is critical that all areas are addressed since this chain is only as strong as its weakest link. For example, a trusted vendor that has access through many IT security layers can create risks by not having a password custody policy during staff turnover. A quick site assessment with some preparation and follow-up can produce a categorical score set and a total score which leads to a step-by-step remediation plan.

While it’s the legacy systems that are the base of the problem, with the increasing phenomenon of the Internet of Things (IoT), the industry is seeing just the beginning of the architectural and operational vulnerabilities of digital building monitor and control systems.

The number of cyber incidents involving industrial control systems (including buildings) reported to the DHS increased by 74%, from 140 to 243, between fiscal years 2011 and 2014. In 2012, hackers penetrated the building energy management system (EMS) of a New Jersey manufacturing company. And, in another 2012 incident, an intruder changed the temperature settings of a state government facility’s building EMS. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently warned that even the DHS lacks a strategy to protect sensitive buildings from cyber attacks.

While these examples suggest the likelihood of many more incidents, it’s important to keep the risks in perspective. We need to account for IT realities and risks while also leveraging IT efficiencies. For example, “big data” and analytics also offer powerful opportunities to help facility management executives make data-driven decisions that will reduce their operational costs, increase productivity as well as improve the occupant experience and overall sustainability.

The good news is that the advent of smart building technology has the potential to decrease cyber risks and is prompting long overdue conversations about the importance of cyber security.

For example, in consulting with a large government agency on its smart buildings initiative, our firm worked with both facilities and IT to develop a strategy and standards for a building systems network that would be secure and separate from core business operations. This not only created separation from business data but also reduces the chance for mischief and safety risks related to power, elevator, lighting, and air conditioning. In the design of a large commercial office tower, we worked with 17 different systems controls companies to integrate these into a common backbone and empower a new, more secure way of managing the building that was also “analytics ready.”

Whether reducing cyber risks or leveraging smart building opportunities, it’s important to remember that any strategy must encompass three pillars: buildings, people, and technology. State-of-the-art software is only effective if the building is able to access the data. And technology achieves its potential only if people, decision-making processes, and workflows are also in place. It’s not just new technology; it’s a new way of working.

Cyber Security In Real Estate Cyber Security In Real EstateShircliff and Murchison are co-founders of Intelligent Buildings, LLC, a real estate advisory services company that provides planning and implementation of next-generation strategy for new buildings, existing portfolios, and smart communities. Founded in 2004, Intelligent Buildings has worked extensively in more than 85 cities, and has developed smart building standards for the U.S. and Canadian federal governments. It consults in multiple real estate environments, including corporate, government, utility, institutional, and campuses. In 2015, Intelligent Buildings was ranked among the nation’s fastest-growing private companies on the Inc. 5000 list.

To share your thoughts on cyber security in real estate, visit the Comments section below.

2016 Facility Executive Readers’ Choice Awards: Selected By Facility Management Professionals

Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management Professionals

By Facility Executive Editors
Published in the January/February 2016 Issue

Numerous companies offer products and services that meet the diverse needs of facility management (FM) professionals. For the past 23 years, our editors have asked readers to vote for their preferred vendors in a variety of categories. For this year’s Readers’ Choice Awards, the survey included more than 40 categories, and FM professionals were asked to indicate what companies they rated highest based on product aesthetics, product reliability, value, and customer service. Browse for the results…

Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management Professionals.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsGeorgia-Pacific Gypsum

Georgia-Pacific is a manufacturer and marketer of building products, tissue, packaging, paper, cellulose, and related chemicals. Billions of square feet of DensDeck® roof boards have been installed in thousands of commercial roofing systems worldwide for nearly 30 years. DensDeck and DensDeck Prime panels feature the mold resistance, fire resistance, strength, and dimensional stability built into the entire Dens® portfolio.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsDuro-Last Roofing

The Duro-Last® Roofing system, the “World’s Best Roof®”, is suitable for any flat or low-sloped roof. What sets it apart are the prefabricated deck sheets, accessories, and flashings, which allow for a watertight installation that does not sacrifice aesthetics.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsEFCO, a Pella Company

Designed for low- to mid-rise buildings, EFCO’s curtain wall system, 5600 PG, addresses the challenges of installation and glazing with pre-glaze capability and factory fabrication options. Features like single span or multi-span and anti-bulking clips ease installation.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsSiemens Building Technologies

Siemens’ building automation systems help facility executives minimize energy use; optimize HVAC equipment; and integrate fire, security, lighting, and other systems. They are suitable for offices, hospitals, K-12 schools and campuses, hotels, airports, museums, commercial buildings, single buildings, or multi-building campuses.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsLegrand®/Wiremold

The InteGreat™ Series from Legrand is designed to accommodate a greater use of connectivity in meeting rooms while organizing and protecting critical connections. These products are easy to install and allow access for future technology upgrades—in a flexible and reconfigurable solution.


FEJanFeb16-RC6-SchneiderSchneider Electric

Cooling Optimize, part of the StruxureWare for Data Centers DCIM suite, adds dynamic airflow management and optimization to existing data center cooling systems, enabling significant energy reduction, improved reliability, and availability through automated identification and elimination of hot spots and potential facility risks.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsKONE

An elevator is a lot like a train in that everyone gets on board and has to make every stop along the way. But what if it could be more like a limousine that takes you swiftly and comfortably to exactly where you want to go? That’s the idea behind KONE’s Polaris destination control system for passenger elevators. It can improve vertical transportation in office buildings, hotels, and business complexes. With its engaging and innovative design, KONE Polaris makes a positive impact on the look and feel of a facility.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsHoneywell

Honeywell’s flagship building management system, Enterprise Building Integrator (EBI), provides operators with innovative, flexible energy management technology and data, such as consumption and historical trends that can help optimize a facility’s energy use in real time.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsSimplexGrinnell

Tyco SimplexGrinnell provides advanced SIMPLEX fire alarm panels and cloud-based applications to enhance protection, improve business operations, and increase customer value. The SIMPLEX 4100ES is an advanced, Internet-enabled panel that meets the needs of facility executives in all types of environments.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsJohnson Controls

YORK® Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) systems from Johnson Controls offer efficiency for heating and cooling with multiple modular units that provide quiet comfort for occupants, and flexibility in design. Johnson

Controls offers VRF training classes with expert instructors and hands-on experience to ensure optimal VRF design, installation, and service.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsCurrent, Powered by GE

Current brings innovation to one place by combining GE’s capabilities in LED, solar, energy storage, on-site generation, and electric vehicle infrastructure into a sustainable energy ecosystem to meet customer needs. Current’s Lumination™ IS Series Suspended LED Fixtures offer a modern, clean appearance of continuous rows of light while using 40% less energy than traditional lighting.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsOSRAM SYLVANIA offers a variety of linear, U-bend, compact, and specialty fluorescent lamps. The company’s focus has been on providing energy efficient and long life T8, T5, and CF lamps, enabling end users to reduce lighting maintenance costs and take advantage of utility rebates.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsLutron Electronics Co., Inc.

Lutron Electronics Co., Inc. designs products that deliver quality and performance to the customer. A new Quantum software interface allows facility managers to manage their electric light and daylight for maximum energy efficiency, comfort, and productivity. From anywhere in a building, a facility manager can control electric lights and shades as well as configure, monitor, analyze, and report on the light system in a building.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsSloan Valve

Sloan, a manufacturer of commercial plumbing systems, is at the forefront of the green building movement. Sloan’s Hybrid Urinals combine a multi-patented urinal cartridge with revolutionary technology that keep urinals and drain lines clean, hygienic, odor-free, and clog-free.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsRain Bird

Rain Bird has been dedicated to The Intelligent Use of Water™ for over 80 years. From high efficiency sprinklers and drip irrigation to advanced control technologies like Rain Bird’s cloud-based IQ™ Platform, Rain Bird delivers powerful tools to maximize water savings.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsMohawk

With open, engaged environments replacing segmented ones, Mohawk is challenged to develop flooring solutions that connect with the Maker movement and mimic handcrafted details. The company’s Iconic Earth’s stone visuals reflect natural processes of geology with pops of sheen morphing and shifting throughout the floor and metallic yarns that mimic the look of oxidized minerals. The collection is comprised of three patterns—two in plank format and one in traditional carpet tile format—that standalone or work harmoniously. Various installations optimize modular flooring solutions suitable for high-traffic commercial applications.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsShaw

Shaw Contract Group manufactures high performance, Cradle to Cradle Certified™ carpet for any environment. Shaw Contract Group’s flooring provides maximum comfort, ease of maintenance, durability, and performance. EcoWorx carpet with EcoSolution Q fiber is PVC-free and can be recycled, reducing environmental impact.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsArmstrong® Commercial Ceilings

Armstrong Ceilings provides innovative products designed to control acoustics in today’s flexible interiors. Total Acoustics™ ceiling panels feature a combination of sound absorption (NRC) and sound blocking (CAC) in a single panel, making them a suitable choice for spaces with multiple functions.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsNorton Door Controls

Norton Door Controls offers a comprehensive line of door controls designed and manufactured to ensure performance and reliability. The Norton 9500 Series is an ANSI/BHMA Grade 1 Door closer that features a clean, modern cover aesthetic and durable cast iron body that can be used in a variety of environments requiring ADA compliance.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsArmstrong® Commercial Flooring

Armstrong provides facility managers with design options, durable performance, easy maintenance, and budget friendly solutions for every space with a portfolio of LVT, BioBased Tile®, sheet, linoleum, VCT, laminate, and hardwood flooring products. Armstrong’s newest linoleum sheet, Rhythmics, is a contemporary linear design and part of the LinoArt™ collection, which begins sustainable and remains sustainable. The NATURCote™ II high performance coating, featured on all LinoArt products, withstands scratches and scuffs from foot traffic. It also provides resistance to soiling and stains, damage from alcohol-based hand sanitizers, and damage that may result from exposure to high pH cleaning chemicals.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsSteelcase

Steelcase helps leading organizations recognize that their physical workplace can amplify the performance of their people, teams, and organization. Brody WorkLounge optimizes real estate by transforming underused, “in-between spaces” into coveted destinations for focus and by meeting needs for privacy, power, lighting, and personal storage.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsThe HON Company

Through its Voice of the Customer process, The HON Company listens and then produces workplace solutions that customers need to be successful. Preside® tables offer styles from cozy café to large conference rooms, and adapt to accommodate any space or work style, making it easy for people and ideas to connect.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsDavies Office

Transform old, tired looking furniture into contemporary designed solutions. Davies will re-engineer and rework existing furniture by remanufacturing it to like-new options. Take taller panels, filing, and storage, and re-index them to lower heights and workspace solutions.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsHerman Miller

Herman Miller has a long history of making sitting a more natural part of the way people work. While each Herman Miller high performance work chair, including Aeron, is designed to solve a unique set of problems, they all contain three fundamental and human-centered innovations: PostureFit keeps a user’s spine properly aligned; the proprietary tilt designs let users recline naturally without losing support; and highly engineered breathable surface materials dynamically support the micro-movements of the body.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsSherwin-Williams

Sherwin-Williams offers a wide range of high-performance coating systems for walls, floors, roofs, and concrete surfaces to help facility managers meet tight deadlines and control costs. Emerald® paint and primer in one with advanced stain blocking technology delivers best-in-class overall performance. With exceptional coverage and washability, it’s perfect for any paint job.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsExcel Dryer

The XLERATOR® Hand Dryer is the original, patented, high-speed, energy efficient hand dryer manufactured by Excel Dryer. XLERATOR dries hands completely in 10 seconds, three times faster than conventional hand dryers and uses 80% less energy.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsAPCO Graphics

APCO has designed innovative sign solutions since 1966, combining the best of both form and function. The company’s newest product, Elevate, is a frameless, modular sign system with a unique floating appearance, offering ADA compliant solutions that are both design-flexible and easy to maintain at the facility level.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsRubbermaid Commercial Products

For more than 45 years, Rubbermaid Commercial Products has led the industry in bringing products to market with the ultimate goal of helping people to maintain safe, healthy commercial and institutional environments. RCP’s Maximizer™ mop significantly reduces the effort needed to lift and move the mop. With 30% more floor coverage and 25% less weight compared to traditional mops, it reduces the time spent cleaning large areas, which means increased productivity and less strain on cleaning professionals.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsCushman/EZ-GO

Since 1901, Cushman vehicles have been recognized as light transportation solutions for commercial and industrial applications. With a robust 28-hp gas engine, the Hauler 4X4 features an industry leading 800 pound cargo capacity and provides up to 1,200 pounds of total vehicle payload.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsKimberly-Clark Professional

Kimberly-Clark Professional* is committed to helping customers achieve their sustainability goals—something reflected in its product design. The New Scott* brand Paper Towel is 100% compostable, contains at least 80% post-consumer waste exceeding EPA standards, and is FSC® and ECOLOGO® certified. It is also designed with Absorbency Pockets*, so fewer towels can be used.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsBird-X

Bird-X’s new ProHawk UAV is the first programmable drone created specifically for bird control. Unwanted birds are repelled by the built-in sonic sound device of naturally recorded predator calls and bird distress cries. It uses a GPS to follow a predetermined flight path.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsRubbermaid Commercial Products

Rubbermaid Commercial Products is committed to developing cutting edge innovations that will positively impact the way its customers do business. RCP’s Configure™ recycling solution can be tailored to meet the needs of any facility. It is a system that can be customized based on container size, color, waste stream, and more. New features such as magnetic connections and an easy access front door prioritize ease of use and maintenance while ensuring compliance with industry standards and legislation.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsASSA ABLOY

ASSA ABLOY’s vision is to be the most innovative supplier of total door opening solutions in order to deliver safe and convenient security solutions that provide real added value to customers. The KS100-640H server cabinet lock and Aperio® hub reflects this by bringing real time access control in a single card system to individual server doors.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsGenerac

Generac designs all of its products with the needs of its customers in mind. The 500kW Natural Gas Generator is the largest in Generac’s line of industrial generators and is suitable for large standby power applications, such as office buildings and mission critical data centers.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsHID Global

HID Global provides a comprehensive array of printers for custom card personalization. HID Global’s FARGO® Direct-to-Card (DTC) and High Definition (HDP) printers meet the card customization needs of small businesses, global enterprise organizations, and government agencies worldwide.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsHoneywell

Honeywell’s flagship building management system Enterprise Building Integrator (EBI) integrates critical building systems including security to enable personnel to identify and manage risks earlier to reduce impact of potential security or safety incidents through real-time information and automated incident responses.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsPanasonic

Panasonic provides industry-leading solutions to capture, record, manage, and analyze surveillance video. The company’s 6 Series outdoor camera is one of its many video surveillance products and solutions that offer high picture quality, mission-critical reliability, and low total cost of ownership.



Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsVARIDESK

Simplicity is at the heart of the VARIDESK design philosophy. The company strives for its products to be easy to set up and use. This is why most of its desks come fully assembled and ready for work, right out of the box.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsStaples Facility Solutions

Staples Advantage, the business-to-business division of Staples, offers products and services that create a more welcoming and comfortable breakroom, including an assortment of food and beverages. Staples Advantage is a leader in providing coffee services solutions for any size business and any type of coffee—from single serve brewers, like the Keurig, to traditional carafes and specialty brewers for lattes and espresso beverages. Additionally, Staples Advantage provides an assortment of sweeteners, creamers, and cups for employee satisfaction in the office.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsCanon Business Process Services

Canon Business Process Services (Canon) provides facilities support via its Corporate Campus Logistics services. Designed for large corporate sites, Canon’s offering provides the logistics process, experienced professionals, and technology necessary to distribute supplies, transport employees, and manage the storage of materials used to support daily workplace needs.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsAutodesk

Autodesk Building Ops is a mobile-first asset and maintenance management solution that is transforming building handover and operations by placing BIM asset data in the hands of those who need it most, when they need it, and where they need it.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsEricsson

Ericsson is a leader in the rapidly changing environment of communications technology—providing equipment, software, and services to enable transformation through mobility. The company’s small cells portfolio delivers the coverage, capacity, and scalability required for enterprise mobility- and cloud-based applications and operations.


Readers’ Choice Awards Selected By Facility Management ProfessionalsCambridge Sound Management

Cambridge Sound Management offers innovative, simple, and intelligently designed solutions to the problems of privacy and acoustic distractions. The company’s patented QtPro solution, powered by direct field Quiet Technology, is easy to install and delivers high quality uniform sound masking without complex commissioning.

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In Check

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In Check

By Anne Cosgrove
From the January/February 2016 Issue

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In CheckFacility improvement projects have the potential to improve the quality of operations as well as the bottom line. The trick for facility management professionals is to identify and execute those projects that will deliver the best overall results for the specific facility, and the organization overall. In Hamilton County, OH, the director of county facilities, Ralph W. Linne, MBA, CPM, BOC has implemented several initiatives that individually and together are improving the building stock leased, owned, and occupied by the county.

In his position since 2001, Linne manages a facilities department of more than 200 employees that maintains nearly 300 facilities totaling approximately 3.5 million square feet. The Hamilton County Department of County Facilities responsibilities include: property management, facility maintenance and operations, design and construction services, energy management, procurement services, grounds and landscaping, cleaning, space planning, parking, foodservice, and security services.

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In Check
The Hamilton County Courthouse was included in the energy performance contracting projects Linne and his team executed recently. (Photo: Hamilton County, OH)

Under Linne’s leadership, improvements to department operations and facility efficiencies have flourished, even in the face of budget limitations.

Most recently, he oversaw the implementation of a three phase energy performance contract that was completed in June 2015. The energy conservation project included three main phases of performance contracting work on 15 major buildings under the jurisdiction of the facilities department.

The majority of work was done in five county buildings, located in downtown Cincinnati. These are:

  • Hamilton County Courthouse (603,856 square feet);
  • Justice Center (houses the county jail, 383,244 square feet);
  • William Howard Taft (Law) Center (193,524 square feet);
  • 800 Broadway Building (includes sheriff and Jobs and Family services offices, 364,933 square feet); and
  • Hamilton County Administration Building (209,063 square feet).

The energy performance contract included upgrades throughout these buildings, including new boilers, chillers, air handlers, lighting, plumbing fixtures, direct digital controls (DDC), cooling towers, and thermal solar panels (to heat water at the Justice Center).

Since these projects began in 2010, Linne reports for these and other facilities included in the contract activity an annual electric usage decrease of 10,779 megawatts; an annual natural gas usage decrease of 28,523 therms; and an annual water usage decrease of 18,234 kilogallons. These savings have delivered an approximate avoided cost of $1.96 million; $590,000; and $40,900, respectively, over the past five years.

2016 Winner Profile

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In Check
Ralph W. Linne
Director of County Facilities
Hamilton County, OH


Overview: Energy performance contracts, from 2011-15 significantly reduce consumption and costs. Software implementation streamlines multiple facets of department.

Type of Facilities: Offices, courthouse, correctional facilities.

Square Footage: 3.5 million, in 270+ facilities.

Annual Budget: $20 million annual; $153 million five year capital.

2016 FEY Judges

Ted Bielicky, CFM
Senior director of facilities, Novo Nordisk, Plainsboro, NJ

Michael Berthelsen
Associate vice president, facilities management, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities campus

David J. Lenart, P.E.
Director of facilities and materials management, Columbus Regional Hospital, Columbus, IN

Maria C. Vickers, CFM
Regional manager, Workplace Services, Americas & EMEA, Advanced Micro Devices, Boxborough, MA

For his role in launching and executing this energy project, coupled with ENERGY STAR achievements and initiatives in technology, Linne is recognized as this magazine’s 2016 Facility Executive of the Year.

Linne is an active member of USGBC, IFMA and BOMA organizations in the Greater Cincinnati area; a trustee for the Ohio Public Facilities Maintenance Organization (OPFMA); and serves on the County Commissioners’ Association of Ohio Service Corporation Natural Gas Program Board. He has achieved a Building Operator Certification (BOC), Level 1 from the Northwest Energy Efficiency Council, and teaches several BOC certification courses.

Additionally, Linne is certified as Level III in Homeland Security from the American College of Forensic Examiners Institute. This was a requirement for Hamilton County employees after 9/11, and maintaining certification as Linne has done is now optional.

Tackling Energy Improvements

Performance contracting discussions started in 2009 and began to be implemented in 2010, with the last phase complete in mid-2015. Having a 20 year replacement plan in place was significant to justifying the project and the return on investment, explains Linne. “When I came to Hamilton County, we put together a 20 year replacement plan for our buildings. I drew on my experience in capital budgets and forecasting.”

Working with three design partners—structural engineer, MEP engineer, and architect, the facilities department identified when equipment had been installed and life expectancy. “When the opportunity for performance contracting came up, and there were some grants available, having the 20 year plan helped to get the project approved,” says Linne.

As part of his 25 years of facility management experience, Linne was heavily involved in managing public construction projects, including two nuclear power plants. As such, project management and energy are two areas of strength.

Prior to the recent energy performance, his department was already actively doing energy efficiency projects throughout Hamilton County facilities. These efforts were recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR program. Five county owned buildings in downtown Cincinnati earned ENERGY STAR certification for 2015, which signifies that the buildings perform in the top 25% of similar facilities nationwide for energy efficiency and meets energy efficiency performance levels set by the EPA.

The facilities earning ENERGY STAR most recently are: Hamilton County Administration Building; 800 Broadway Building; William Howard Taft Law Center; Alms & Doepke A&D) Building; and 250 William Howard Taft Building.

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In Check
Solar thermal domestic water heaters located on the roof of the north tower of the Hamilton County, OH Justice Center provides all of the heated domestic water for the building. (Photo: Hamilton County, OH)

In addition both of the County’s Justice Centers (jail facilities) have shown scores in excess of the certification minimum; however, ENERGY STAR does not yet recognize penal institutions.

One of Linne’s goals, as it relates to ENERGY STAR, is to achieve certification for the Courthouse. “The obstacles is that the courthouse boilers are used to also heat the Justice Center,” he explains. “Our natural gas usage is very high, since we’re heating two buildings with the equipment. We are working with the EPA, and also ThermalTech Engineering to try to track usage separately.”

A significant achievement for Linne and his department has been improving the ENERGY STAR score for the A&D Building from 41 to 90. After taking over management from the occupying department in 2008, the facilities department set to work to on this historical building, built in 1878.

When asked about staff related strategies he has used to ensure ENERGY STAR progress, Linne explains, “Each building manager is reviewed on their ability to control energy usage, and they are involved in the replacement of equipment, including receiving training on the proper operating procedures.”

He continues, “This includes working with the building tenants to help them understand the saving to the county by using ENERGY STAR computers and turning lights out, for instance. Also, a very important that we inspect building exteriors every five years.”

Meanwhile, the 800 Broadway Building achieved LEED-EB: O&M certification in 2014. It was the first existing government building in Ohio to obtain this status. The building has also been ENERGY STAR certified for eight consecutive years.

Details on the county’s energy and utility usage during 2014 can be accessed in the “Hamilton County 2014 Energy Management and Utility Usage Report” published in April 2015 (go to Annual Reports section on the Hamilton County website page:

Software Tools With Impact

When it comes to using facility management and real estate software to maintain, track, and evaluate the state of Hamilton County facilities, Linne has been a pioneer. In 2003, he decided to introduce a software module from ARCHIBUS, focused on tracking and managing space. Since then, modules have been added over the years, helping to increase insight into multiple areas of the facilities department. Currently, ARCHIBUS is the system employed the facilities department to manage the various aspects of facility management, including: capital planning, energy management, space management, asset and software management, building operations, management and cost estimating of projects (including LEED), management of information for various conditions within the buildings (including deferred maintenance), management of environmental assets, and employee safety.

The results that Linne’s implementation delivered drew interest from his counterparts in the county government. The ARCHIBUS platform, with multiple modules, has expanded into a county-wide tool enabling numerous departments to share information.

For instance, Linne introduced an inventory and property management module, and when the county auditor saw the type of data made available from the facilities department with this tool, they requested other applicable departments begin using it. “The county government requirements are that department heads must report their inventory of assets each year,” says Linne. “This makes this process easier and accurate.”

States Linne, “We have customized this system to work in a government environment as opposed to molding our policies and procedures around it.”

When the recently implemented energy performance contract was under discussion, the County referred to the ARCHIBUS energy and asset management applications to perform baseline energy usage and other data collection and analysis. The centralization of, and access to, all this usage, maintenance and other data is essential for establishing performance contracting compliance by both client and contractor alike, Linne explains.

“This is an investment of over $17 million dollars that includes capital equipment and other needs which will pay for itself through decreased usage, lowering costs as a result,” says Linne. “Our energy management application is the main tool to track energy usage and ensure taxpayers that our energy conservation measures were successful.”

Product Information

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In Check

Lighting (LED and fluorescent): LSI Industries.

Cleaning Services: ABM; Scioto.

Building Automation (Energy Management): Archibus; Tridium based server.

Building Automation (HVAC): Automated Logic Controls; Honeywell Controls; JCI Controls.

CAFM/IWMS Software: Archibus.

Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing Engineers: ThermalTech Engineering.

Energy Performance Contract: Ameresco; Clean Energy Solutions.

What’s Next?

Since 2008, Hamilton County has been impacted by declining revenue and strong service demands. General fund revenue decreased by over 28% between 2008-2013, with more reductions in other funding streams. During this time, overall County staffing has been reduced 27% (1,700 employees). And facility space was consolidated (with both rented and owned space reduced). Still, several departments see increased use, such as Probation and Juvenile Courts.

Linne and his team focus on identifying project needs within their managed buildings. For the near future, Linne says, “We are updating the County Master Plan for the downtown buildings, and from that will have a five year plan for relocations and remodeling. We are also in the process of securing a site to build a 90,000 square foot crime lab and morgue. The current facility is outdated, with a footprint of 35,000 square feet.”

To create a facility master plan, Linne explains, that several years ago, his department spoke with elected officials on what space they needed, and what growth they expected. “We are revisiting that now,” he says. “We were in a recession then, and some of the leadership has changed. So we want to make sure we have the right people in the right buildings. And, we need to determine which buildings we’ll keep long term, and where we will do improvements first.”

Reflecting on the past projects, those on deck, and daily operations, Linne shares that, in addition to understanding the budget process, honing his communication skills significantly contributes to getting things accomplished. He says, “I work with judges, law enforcement, elected officials, the cleaning company, the public, and news media. It is important to understand how to communicate at all levels in your organization.”

Facility Executive of the Year 2016: Keeping Costs In CheckThis article is based on project literature and an interview with Linne.

Please share your thoughts on this article in the Comments section below. To submit an overview of your new construction or renovation story for article consideration, send an e-mail to

Facility Executive | November/December 2015 Issue


Facility Executive: November/December 2015

Facility-Executive-November/December-2015Volume 28, Number 6

FM Frequency: Building Envelope Check In The New Year | Structural integrity calls for inspection of foundations, walls, windows, and more.

Professional Development: 15 Steps To Mitigate Disaster | Though it may be impossible to avoid a damaging event, facility leaders can plan ahead to help protect people and property.

The HVAC Factor: Executive View Of Preventive Maintenance | Requesting a summary of equipment conditions provides a broad picture that assists in budgeting for the future.

Facility Retrofit: Software Spurs Efficiency | Rawhide Boys Ranch in Wisconsin is stretching its donation dollars further by installing maintenance software.

Tapered Insulation For Low Slope Roofing | For a low-slope roof, this type of system is a foundation for long-term protection. Plus, building envelope audits lead to energy and indoor air quality improvements.

Teaching Old Buildings New Tricks | Smart facility technologies abound, and there’s opportunity for facilities of all ages. Plus, facility departments have critical role in Internet of Things adoption.

10 Strategies For Energy Management | Take stock of energy planning with this list of tips. Plus, an additional five strategies position the facilities team for success.

Senior Living Transformation | In Arizona, Sun Health’s shift from a healthcare to hospitality model is reflected in recent construction projects. Plus, a senior residence conducts a pilot program to increase energy efficiency.

To subscribe to Facility Executive magazine, visit this link.

Facility Executive | September/October 2015 Issue

Facility Executive: September/October 2015Facility-Executive-September/October-2015

Volume 28, Number 5

Tech And FM: In Case Of Emergency…| With a robust distributed antennae system, wireless communications can be kept afloat in an affected facility.

Facility Retrofit: Light It Up! | At UCLA, several buildings for the athletics program have tested a new lighting controls system.

Designing Lobbies For Good Security | Security in this busy and often public space can be made more effective with attention to space layout.

Strong And Sustainable | Resilience against extreme weather and other threats includes strategies that also reduce negative impact on the environment.

Considerations For Green Cleaning | Factors specific to a facility influence a successful program. Plus, are engineered water systems effective?

Look, Listen, And Learn To Find Leaks | Firsthand observation combined with emerging technology aid facility leaders in reducing water waste.

100 Years Young | Built in 1915, San Francisco City Hall keeps up with the times with its recent LEED Platinum certification. Plus, LEED v4 pursuits impact painting decisions.

Teamwork Towards Energy Reductions | Retrofit Chicago program spurs two commercial building teams to tackle energy goals, with the help of EDF Climate Corps.

Efficiency Award For Colorado Brewery | In Golden, CO, the MillerCoors Golden Brewery employs a multi-faceted approach to reduce its resource consumption.

Energy Storage At Alcatraz | Thanks to a microgrid installation, there’s no escape for the solar power derived on this island operated by the National Park Service.

To subscribe to Facility Executive magazine, visit this link.

Facility Executive | July/August 2015 Issue

Facility Executive: July/August 2015facility-executive-july-august-2015

Volume 28, Number 4

FM Frequency: Moving Targets| A 360 degree view of security vulnerabilities helps to mitigate potential threats to facilities.

Professional Development: Facility Executive As Polymath | As responsibilities evolve and expand, communication is but one skill that should be honed.

The HVAC Factor: Insulation For Chilled Water Piping | With hot, humid climates as the focus, several insulation types were field tested.

Facility Retrofit: Eradicating Bird Mess | Managers at a restored lighthouse in Michigan found success using sonics to prevent seagulls from landing on its decks.

Retail Maintenance | Data collection and other technology tools assist facilities departments in this sector.

Multi-Site Security | With safety paramount, additional aspects to consider include simplifying infrastructure and keeping costs in check.

Effective Exterior Surveillance | Cameras and lighting must work together to maximize success.

Powering Performance | Five electrical design principles help to integrate and optimize systems in demanding facilities. Plus, flywheel technology may be a fit for some backup systems.

Local Flavor Infusion | In New Orleans, a hotel renovation blends 21st century amenities with historic preservation. Plus, consider features of hand dryers in hospitality settings.

Streamlining The Facility Management Function | At Broward College in South Florida, dispersed capabilities were brought into a centralized system.

To subscribe to Facility Executive magazine, visit this link.

Facility Executive | May/June 2015 Issue

Open office atrium.

Facility Executive: May/June 2015Open office atrium.

Volume 28, Number 3

Tech And FM: The Internet Of Things | This emerging architecture impacts virtually all building systems, making them smarter and quicker to respond.

Facility Retrofit: Heat And Glare Control | At the Holiday Inn Chicago Mart Plaza River North in downtown Chicago, installing window film to guest rooms and an atrium has improved occupant comfort.

Services & Maintenance: Carpet Care Procedures | A recently published standard and guide on cleaning for textiles floor coverings provides insight on effective cleaning.

Furniture Trends: The Open Office Puzzle | The walls have come down in many open office workplaces, but does one size fit all?

Ceilings: Optimized Design | AnnMarie Jackson shares her insight on ceiling design and performance in this article.

Furniture: A Second Life | There’s tremendous need for usable furnishings among national and international relief and development organizations.

FM Issue: Situational Awareness For Safety | When a threat to safety emerges, technology tools can play a significant part in mitigating damage.

ADA Compliance Check: Five Need To Know Updates | What facility leaders don’t know about ADA updates, violation penalties, and compliance improvement tactics can cost them.

Healthcare Case Study: A Healthy Remedy | In a tight timeline, Trinity Hospital Twin City in Dennison, OH underwent necessary life safety and aesthetic upgrades in several strategic phases.

Healthcare Bonus Coverage: Construction Vibrations In Healthcare Settings | Monitoring ground disturbances helps ensure patient safety.

Healthcare Bonus Coverage: Shaping Disinfection Programs | Cleanliness and disinfection are important in all facilities, and it’s paramount in healthcare settings.

Renting HVAC And Power | Quick deployment and a proper fit are key factors in this process.

Renewable Energy: Greening An Auto Plant | Two wind turbines are helping to power Honda Manufacturing capabilities in Russells Point, OH.

To subscribe to Facility Executive magazine, visit this link.

Facility Executive | March/April 2015 Issue

Cover March/April 2015 Facility Executive.

Facility Executive: March/April 2015Cover March/April 2015 Facility Executive.

Volume 28, Number 2

FM Frequency: The Free Range Office | Open office environments provide benefits, but do these come at the cost of employee satisfaction?

Professional Development: Protecting Historic Structures | Facilities built before current fire systems and codes were in place require careful attention to mitigate risk.

The HVAC Factor: Data Center Operations | The Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) metric captures the efficiency of mechanical systems, but there is more to consider in the data center.

Facility Retrofit: Campus Groundskeeping | Water conservation is but one component of the groundskeeping program at the University of California, Davis.

Services & Maintenance: Emergency Notifications | Research from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) provides guidance on communication strategies.

Lighting Trends: Quality Illumination | Balancing aesthetics with energy savings requires consideration of multiple features with LED bulbs. Plus, new DOE ballast efficiency rules are in effect.

FM Issue: Energy Disclosure | Legislation that requires commercial buildings to report certain energy metrics is taking hold in an increasing number of locales.

Higher Education Case Study: Campus Capstone | At North Park University in Chicago, a new facility has sparked improvements in the science curriculum and student interaction.

Higher Education Supplement: Facility Condition Assessments | Whether it’s for higher education or other types of campuses, technology can be leveraged by facility professionals for long-term planning purposes.

To subscribe to Facility Executive magazine, visit this link.

Facility Executive | January/February 2015 Issue

Facility Executive Cover January/February 2015.

Facility Executive: January/February 2015

Volume 28, Number 1Facility Executive Cover January/February 2015.

Technology And FM: Identity And Access Management | Heightened exposure of facility systems calls for increased attention to cybersecurity.

Facility Retrofit: Convenient Consolidation | Restroom renovation at Chicago’s iconic Mart provides efficient updates for occupants and visitors.

Services & Maintenance: Waste Management Strategies | Whether full spectrum or targeted, recycling programs require training and communication.

2015 Readers’ Choice Awards | Find out what products and services were at the top of the list for facility management professionals.

Facility Executive Of The Year 2015: Strategic Revamp | Michael Berthelsen, associate vice president of facilities management at the University of Minnesota, named 2015 Facility Executive of the Year.

FM Issue: Code Compliance For Roofing | As of January 1, 2015, 14 states have adopted IECC 2012, making compliance tough for commercial reroofing projects in places that have adopted the code.

HVAC Trends: Cooling Controls | Chiller equipment performance is improved with enhanced internal controls. Plus, energy metering accuracy relies on the condition of current transformers.

Renewable Energy: Wanted – Simpler Access To Clean Energy | Major companies signed these principles to state their commitment to using renewable power as well as to highlight the challenges they face in procuring it.

To subscribe to Facility Executive magazine, visit this link.

Today’s Facility Manager | November/December 2014 Issue

Cover of the November/December 2014 issue.

Today’s Facility Manager: November/December 2014

Volume 27, Number 9TFM-2014-NovDev

Tricks Of The Trade: Complying With OSHA HazCom And Precarious Light Placement

The HVAC Factor: Systems Get A Break | The new John and Frances Angelos Law Center features passive heating and cooling.

Professional Development: Strategizing Outsourcing | There are several strategic practices facility professionals should follow when making the shift to outsourced services.

Services & Maintenance: Think Outside The Box | Maintaining the building envelope is a crucial to achieving energy savings and preserving facility integrity.

Indoor Air Quality Trends: Sustaining Healthy Air | The way HVAC systems are operated can help mitigate the spread of airborne illnesses by filtering out particulates that result from poor IAQ.

FM Issue: When Open Isn’t So Open | When integrating building systems, facilities should make sure protocols are open in order to deliver the best results for the building.

Special Feature: Water Conservaton – The Rising Tide | Audits, efficient fixtures, and staff training are keys to shoring up water conservation.

Senior Living Case Study: Care In Construction | For a senior living facility, safety was front and center during improvements. Plus, find out more about the codes for sprinkler upkeep in critical assisted living areas.

2015 Solutions: Advancements In Products & Services | Tune in to hear these podcasts with top suppliers who have made a special effort to create products that resolve the most pressing facility management issues.

Facility Executive Of The Year Recaps | Past winners of this prestigious award from Today’s Facility Manager revisit the projects for which they were initially recognized.

David Lenart (2010 Winner): Planning To Fail
Robert Wengel (2012 Winner): Making Waves At Shedd Aquarium
J.B. Messer (2013 Winner): Energy Use, A Master Plan

Renewable Energy: Flywheels For Backup Power | During emergency situations, this energy storage technology functions in a manner similar to an active mechanical battery.

To subscribe to TFM, visit this link.

Today’s Facility Manager | October 2014 Issue

Cover of the October 2014 issue of Today's Facility Manager's Green Report issue.

Today’s Facility Manager: October 2014

Volume 27, Number 8Cover of the October 2014 issue of Today's Facility Manager's Green Report issue.

FM Frequency: It’s Not Easy Being Green(er) | Facility occupants can be the biggest barriers to the success of sustainability initiatives.

Tech And FM: The Enernet – The Next Frontier? | Based on the principles of the Internet, a new energy infrastructure is on the horizon.

Facility Retrofit: Green Roof Revisit | Susceptible to flooding, Ford’s Dearborn, MI complex followed recommendations by William McDonough to install a vegetative roof, which still works well many years later.

Services & Maintenance: All-Around Green Clean | Implementing effective, sustainable cleaning programs involves both products and policies.

Alternative Energy Trends: Deep Impact With Energy Retrofits | Professionals can take efficiency improvements to the next level; plus, corporate energy buyers sign onto Renewable Energy Buyers’ Principles.

FM Issue: Managing Security Services | When evaluating the effectiveness of security staff, there are key issues to consider.

LEED Case Study: Triple LEED | The most recent achievement in Wyndham Worldwide’s sustainability journey is a third LEED certification at its headquarters campus in New Jersey.

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Today’s Facility Manager | September 2014 Issue

Today's Facility Manager Mission Critical September 2014.

Today’s Facility Manager: September 2014

Volume 27, Number 7Today's Facility Manager Mission Critical September 2014.

The HVAC Factor: Hybrid Operating Rooms | Gaining ground in healthcare facilities, these spaces call for careful HVAC system planning.

Professional Development: Finding Future Facility Managers | Job placement for FM graduates is nearly 100%, yet there are not enough FM degree programs or graduates to fill the FM vacancies coming available.

Services & Maintenance: For Safety’s Sake | Deep knowledge of a facility’s water system is the first step to safety when ensuring a healthy supply.

Energy Management Trends: Stepping Up Energy Management | Led by the U.S. Department of Energy, the Better Buildings Challenge garners results in many different types of facilities.

FM Issue: Mission Critical Training | Even with the best equipment in place, employee knowledge is crucial to reliability.

Hospital Case Study: Rebirth In New Orleans | New Orleans East Hospital has replaced a facility put out of operation by Katrina in 2005. Sidebar covers NFPA 99: Health Care Facilities Code update.

Special Feature: Forklifts And Freight Terminal Doors | A common headache for facility managers in industrial settings is damage to doors.

Renewable Energy: The Role Of Demand Response | The proliferation of renewable energy will be spurred by participation in these programs.

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July/August 2014 (Volume 27, Number 6)

july/august 2014 cover

Today’s Facility Manager: July/August 2014july/august 2014 cover

Tricks Of The Trade: Getting Up To Speed And Lighting ROI Discussions

FM Frequency: In-House Sociologist | Fms have to play amateur sociologist and deal with humankind; put on the persona, check emotions at the door, and go reset the circuit breaker.

Technology And FM: Wireless Control For Older Facilities | While not actually “set in stone,” mature buildings can gain a great deal from untethered controls.

Facility Retrofit: Biometric Entry | At the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) Peck School of the Arts, hand reader systems solved security issues.

Services & Maintenance: Customized Bird Control | From office buildings to schools and other buildings, birds and their droppings create unsanitary conditions and add expense to facility maintenance.

Exterior Security Trends: The Long View | The solution lies in identifying the facility assets and prioritizing what is worth protecting with what level of force and intention.

FM Issue: Testing Emergency Generators | To ensure equipment will perform when needed, load banks should be included in trial runs for power generators.

Plumbing Special Feature: Emergency Shower Selection | As emergency shower product choices continue to evolve, fms and safety managers have better options for optimizing worker protection.

Cool Roofs Special Feature: Reflective Roofs | The use of white roofing materials has proliferated across the United States, but are these materials delivering on their energy efficient promise?

Higher Education Case Study: All About Business | The new L. William Seidman Center at Grand Valley State University (GSVU) achieved LEED Certification with both operations and maintenance in mind.

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June 2014 Issue (Volume 27, Number 5)

TFM June 2014

Today’s Facility Manager: June 2014TFM June 2014

Tricks Of The Trade: Shopping For CMMS And Prepping For Cold And Flu Season

The HVAC Factor: Double Duty | Ductwork and diffusers can be key to building a distributed antenna system.

Professional Development: Equipment Financing | There are multiple paths facility managers can take to obtain the items they need.

Services & Maintenance: New Life For Old Carpet | Keeping this facility asset out of the landfill begins before it’s even installed.

Refurbishing Trends: Remanufactured Furniture | Whether or not a sustainable certification is a goal, pre-owned furnishings offer options.

FM Issue: Building Automation Analytics | Gathering “big data” on facility operations is a boon when harnessed successfully.

Corporate Headquarters Case Study: Creative Connections | Online retailer has a bold new headquarters in downtown Las Vegas.

Renewable Energy: Pursuing Multi-Site Solar | Every facility has distinct needs, and working with a single vendor can help lighten the load.

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May 2014 Issue (Volume 27, Number 4)

TFM May 2014

Today’s Facility Manager: May 2014

TFM May 2014Tricks Of The Trade: Help Desk Options And WiFi Thermostats

FM Frequency: Historic Sites – Challenges, Opportunities | Some aged facilities are those that only a facility manager could love.

Technology And FM: Communications Central | Whether for daily operations or emergency management, command centers can be key.

Facility Retrofit: Energy Milestone | The Kroger Co. made changes resulting in its 500th ENERGY STAR certified store.

Services & Maintenance: Problem Ceilings | Achieving satisfactory acoustics and aesthetics can be a challenge for facility managers.

Furniture Trends: Setting The Stage | An evolving workforce calls on facility planners to choose furnishings that strike a balance.

FM Issue: Message Received? | Keeping people safe during a crisis requires an effective plan to share information.

Hotel Case Study: Welcome Upgrades | A Hilton hotel in Universal City, CA has replaced equipment and improved energy efficiency through PACE financing.

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April 2014 Issue (Volume 27, Number 3)

TFM April 2014

Today’s Facility Manager: April 2014TFM April 2014

Tricks Of The Trade: Per Square Foot Costs For Renovations and Tracking Maintenance

The HVAC Factor: Keeping Cool, Safely | High volume, low speed fans can help protect workers in high temperature facilities.

Professional Development: Cooperative Purchasing | For organizations eligible to participate, this procurement approach saves time and money.

Services & Maintenance: Greener Groundskeeping | The Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) is rolling out an updated rating system.

Lighting Trends: Lighting Controls Update | Revisions to codes and standards impact lighting control systems while continued developments in LED lighting serve facility management needs.

FM Issue: Cybersecurity Evolution | As facilities systems increasingly intersect with IT infrastructure, protection is paramount.

Manufacturing Case Study: Optimized Production | A manufacturer in Moorestown, NJ operates on solar power.

Renewable Energy: Combined Heat And Power | In response to an Executive Order, the National Archives stepped up its pursuit of energy efficiency.

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