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2011 Green Building Awards

Mary M Hooker School

Alexion Award of Excellence & Honor Award, Mary M. Hooker Environmental Science Magnet School, Hartford, CT

This project received the Alexion Award of Excellence as well as an Honor award in the Commercial/Institutional category. The existing 75,000 sf facility was completely renovated along with the addition of 31,000 sf of new academic areas. The school has been certified LEED Platinum. The following strategies contributed to the project's LEED certification:

  • The theme of the school is Education in Energy Efficiency and Environmental Responsibility. The program for the main addition and entrance to the school presented a unique opportunity to develop what is essentially an environmentally focused children's museum for the students.
  • Natural materials such as water, stone and reclaimed wood were utilized to surround the students with nature, as well as creating an exciting, innovative and inviting environment.
  • The ecologically and environmentally inspired spaces include a greenhouse, a butterfly vivarium for raising and studying live butterflies,
  • An interactive science theater providing a 28-foot dome for the digital projection of astronomical and meteorological educational programs;
  • An aquatics laboratory with over 60 tanks for the study of both fresh and salt water species, as well as aquaculture techniques.
  • A 3,500-gallon eco-pond located in the school's main lobby complete with plants, trees and a waterfall provides a complete ecological system to enhance the educational programs at the school.
  • The entire school facility is used as a teaching tool, including the boiler room, cogeneration plant and main electrical rooms, which provide observation windows for the students to learn about the systems that run their school.

Smilow Cancer Hospital

Commercial/Institutional, Merit Award, Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale New Haven Hospital, New Haven, CT

This 516,500 sf specialty hospital for a major academic medical center integrates healing with sustainable design and operations. Located on a highly constrained urban site, the 14-story facility provides comprehensive inpatient and outpatient services, including 168 private patient rooms, 12 operating rooms, radiation therapy, and a full complement of integrated imaging technologies. The hospital was completed in two phases in 2009 and 2010 and is pursuing LEED Silver certification. Applying design principles regarding the benefits of access to daylight and nature, the design team paid particular attention to fenestration and location of patient- centered program elements such as lobbies and corridors, infusion spaces, and waiting areas.

Energy Usage:

  • Reduction in energy consumption was addressed by working with the electrical engineer, the owner, and the local utility provider.
  • Reduced the watts per square foot, occupancy sensors in non-patient areas, and daylighting opportunities where possible. The end result provided the owner with a series of rebates from the utility provider
  • Variable speed drives on numerous items, such as pumps. Room pressure monitors were provided throughout the building

Indoor air quality:

  • The building's air handling units have three levels of filtration. The final tier incorporates HEPA filters. Each of the AHUs contains ultraviolet lights downstream of the cooling coils in order to reduce the potential for mold, fungus, viruses, etc.
  • The AHUs are equipped with outside air flow measuring stations to ensure the proper amount of outside air is introduced to the building. The optimized HVAC system was independently commissioned and set up for measurement and verification.

Water conservation:

  • A 30% reduction in water consumption by utilizing low flow faucets. This brought the baseline value from 2.5gpm down to 1.5-1.1gpm, also assistedgreatly with infection control efforts.
  • In the planting beds located at grade and on the rooftop garden, the supplemental irrigation system uses efficient components and a drip system in lieu of sprinklers. Only the minimal amount of water is supplied to sustain the gardens.

Site decisions and design:

  • This urban site was dominated by a parking lot bounded by a low brick building and chain link fence. There was little pervious surface; minimal green space; and a sidewalk that was a long stretch of uninhabited space.
  • Site design included construction of a greenscape plaza at the building’s entry, where the parking lot and underground fuel tanks once resided. Site selection and reduced parking capacity promote the use of public and alternative transportation.
  • The site provides an allocated "bike hut" for commuters, alternative car fueling stations, and priority parking spaces for HOVs. In addition, the owner established a highly regarded carpooling program for its employees.

Building envelope and building materials:

  • A unitized pressure-equalized rainscreen curtain wall system was installed with a terra cotta façade. The organic terra cotta cladding is 100% natural clay, resulting in a lightweight material that is nearly impervious to the elements. This allowed for a reduction in structural steel with a durable envelope. The shop-unitizing of each panel reduced wasted material and field labor, and allowed for bench-testing prior to installation. The rainscreen prevents negative pressure and forced leaks into the building, eliminates trapped condensation within the exterior wall, and provides a 50% higher effective R-value. The panels incorporate low-emissivity insulated glazing to reduce infrared heat radiation into the building.
  • 80% of the building’s 2,000 square feet of non-roof impervious surfaces have a high reflectivity rate, with a Solar Reflectance Index of over 29. The majority of pervious surfaces are also filled with native plant species.
  • Low-VOC paints and finishes assist with indoor air quality and reduce health risks. Solid-surface finishes and epoxy paints within operating rooms allow for ease of cleaning and reduce infection control concerns. Terrazzo flooring installed in public areas requires only water mopping and minimal maintenance with extreme durability.

Horace Dutton Dining Hall

Commercial/Institutional, Merit Award, Horace Dutton Dining Hall, Taft School, Watertown, CT

The jury selected this project because of its attention to detail, its exemplary energy savings and its use of the building as an educational tool. The project was 25,000 sf of new building and 12,000 sf of renovation. The following Green Design strategies contributed to the project's LEED Gold certification:

  • High performance mechanical systems contribute to an estimated 20% savings in energy and an Energy Star score of 89. The air handling system incorporates a heat wheel, significantly reducing the load of the HVAC system and reducing operating costs.
  • Water use is estimated to be reduced by 80% and low flow fixtures and water reuse contribute to a wastewater reduction of more than 93%.
  • More than 61% of materials and resources are FSC certified wood. More than 20% include recycled content and more than 22% include regional content. Comprehensive recycling of construction waste was integral to the building process. More than 92% of waste was diverted from landfills.
  • Indoor environmental quality is promoted with low emitting adhesives, paints and carpet systems, indoor chemical and pollutant source control, and controllability of lighting and thermal comfort systems. An IAQ Management Plan was in place during construction.
  • No new parking spaces were created and five preferred parking spaces were designated. Bicycle racks and showers encourage alternate transportation. The creation of a new exterior courtyard maximizes open space and helps promote the pedestrian campus environment.

Park Street Clinical Laboratory Building

Commercial/Institutional, Merit Award, Park Street Clinical Laboratory Building, New Haven, CT

The 150,000 square foot Park Street Clinical Laboratory Building is a major extension to a hospital nationally recognized for its commitment to research and teaching. The building is organized around a large, five-story atrium that provides transitional space between the hospital, adjacent 2,000 car garage, clinical laboratories and the public realm. Although the orientation of the atrium-lobby makes the space susceptible to substantial solar heat gain, the innovative high performance polychrome façade design integrates translucent insulating panels to decrease the envelope heat gains and losses and to minimize the peak heating and cooling demand on the mechanical systems. The Park Street Building is one of the first facilities to use this technique in the United States.

  • Additional features of the atrium include wide staircases, generous landings, warming mix of natural and artificial light, and lush interior gardens
  • Stairs, railings benches and finishes are made of wood reclaimed from a local demolished structure. The wood flooring throughout the atrium is of post-consumer waste. The interior gardens incorporate beds of bamboo plantings and other vibrant living greenery.
  • Daylighting analysis sought to balance natural and electric light to achieve efficiency and comfort. The lighting design for the base building is integrated with this daylight strategy, significantly reducing energy loads associated with lighting.
  • High efficiency fluorescent and LED lighting and occupancy sensing controls throughout the building reduces lighting power density below the ASHRAE 90.01-2004 minimum requirements.
  • The project team designed a comprehensive mechanical system which is more efficient than typical hospital administration buildings. Variable speed drives on the chillers, fans, and pumps, water-side economizer, air-side heat recovery, and premium efficiency motors, reduce the energy required to remove the large heat loads and condition this 24/7 hospital support facility.

Stepping Stones Museum for Children

Commercial/Institutional, Merit Award, Stepping Stones Museum for Children, Norwalk, CT

The judges recognized the project team's commitment to sustainability from the outset, an attitude that clearly impacted every decision, from design through construction and beyond. The unique function of the institution as a children's museum also offers the opportunity to educate and energize young minds about these goals both during construction and on a daily functioning basis

The building achieves a unique harmony between the site, the structure and the exhibits. Each element was harnessed to enhance the educational mission of the museum.

  • Offices and conference rooms are illuminated via daylight through large low-e glass window and skylights. Any supplemental electric lighting is energy-efficient, including LED Fixtures and LED windowpanes.
  • Recycled and locally-sourced materials and low-VOC interior finishes and elements were used wherever possible.
  • Several alternative energy sources are featured on the site - including wind turbine and photovoltaic panels.
  • A live, planted roof alleviates storm runoff and helps decrease cooling loads.
  • Additional storm water management includes the use of permeable pavers and rain gardens. Inside, low-flow fixtures and sensors continue the reduction of water use trend. Landscaping includes low maintenance native plantings.

From start to finish and beyond, sustainable actions were employed, the final result is a whimsical building that speaks of possibilities and harnesses the energy of young minds. The project succeeds both as an example of sustainable planning and designs, and as a building that is a celebration of natural, youthful energy.

Commercial/Institutional, Merit Award, Firehouse No. 5, East Hartford, CT

From the beginning stages of the project, the Town of East Hartford and the design team was committed to developing a building and site that enhanced the fire department's mission, that makes a minimal impact on the neighborhood, creates a healthy work environment for the fire personnel, integrates systems that reduces energy consumption and lastly educates the community in sustainability; which is critical to the future of East Hartford and the country. We anticipate it to be the first LEED/Sustainable Fire Station in the State of Connecticut. The project has recently been awarded a grant from the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund (CEEF) under the Geothermal Incentive Program. This project defines the meaning of "collaboration," as the Town of East Hartford, Silver/Petrucelli and Whiting-Turner are fully committed to use this flagship project to educate the community on sustainability, enhance the mission and improve public safety in the Town of East Harford.

Sustainable components included in the Fire House:

  • PV Array – 30 panels – 8kW – or 3% of buildings electricity consumption
  • Solar HW – creates 30% of the buildings hot water demand
  • Geothermal – a closed-loop vertical bore hole water-to-air/water-to-water heat pump (geo-thermal) system, which consists of 24 bores, 400' deep.
  • Rain Gardens –10000 gal. rainwater collection for non-potable cold water use
  • Radiant Heat Flooring – for comfort and interior heating efficiency
  • HVAC – Increased efficiency 30%
  • Recycling – 98% construction waste diverted from landfill
  • Goal to be first registered LEED® Silver fire station in Connecticut.
  • Geo-thermal closed loop system, solar hot water, PV array, rainwater collection, radiant heat flooring.

360 State Street

Multi-Use Building, Honor Award, 360 State Street, New Haven, CT

360 State Street is a mixed-use, transit-oriented, infill development in the heart of downtown New Haven. The project is certified LEED-ND Platinum, the first of its kind to be recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council in the Pilot Neighborhood Development Program for exemplifying the principles of smart growth, urbanism, and green design prior to, during, and post-construction.

  • The project is built on a brownfield in a high density urban area
  • Nearby (across the street) train and bus lines
  • A 400 KW Fuel Cell is in the basement
  • Project generates onsite 88% of its energy needs
  • Extensive lighting control system
  • Web based energy usage for tenants
  • Programmable thermostats
  • Single Stream Recycling
  • Green Chemical Cleaning Program
  • Street level retail areas have a food coop (Elm City Market) and a bicycle shop.

John Dorr Nature Laboratory

Public/Institutional, Merit Award, John Dorr Nature Laboratory, Horace Mann School, Washington, CT

Goals and Objectives: The John Dorr Nature Laboratory serves as an environmental campus for K-12 students who attend Horace Mann School in Bronx, New York. The School had ambitions of becoming as green as its bucolic surroundings, and using its new energy-conserving facilities as part of its curriculum. The facility has achieved LEED Gold certification.

Design Objectives: The new 17,000-square-foot facility was designed to exemplify a commitment to environmental responsibility and stewardship:

  • To teach students about their global responsibilities through local action and concrete example
  • To expose them to nature to learn about it up close
  • To use the building as a teaching tool
  • To show how leadership can make a difference in living responsibly

The Crowley Residence

Home, Honor Award, The Crowley Residence, Greenwich, CT

The Crowley's house is a Historical Town Landmark built in 1906. It is a Colonial style farmhouse set on a treed, sloping site of some 2.3 acres in Greenwich, Connecticut. The judges wish to commend the restoration and green renovation as it an example both in its energy efficiency and in its defiance of the popular trend with favoring demolition in lieu of restoration. The judges were not only impressed that this was a restoration of a historic building but that the renovation has resulted in a 80% decrease in gas usage and a HERS rating of 38 – out of 100. As the design work progressed the design team lead by Beacon Project Group's Frank Mullaney, was presented with an opportunity to greatly improve the energy efficiency of the home, both passively and dynamically while ultimately reducing the overall carbon footprint. The effect in dollar terms is a reduction of gas usage from $11,205 in 2008 to $2,198 in 2010 and a 55% reduction in electricity usage from $9,512 in 2008 to $4,318. Some of the efficiency measures include:

  • Replacing all single-pane windows with new R-3.13 windows.
  • Filling in the spaces between studs with high-density, spray-foam insulation achieving R-values between 22 and 33.
  • High-density, spray-foam insulation was used to increase the roof R-value to 42.
  • The basement slab and the foundation walls for the new addition were all insulated with rigid board insulation giving R-values of 19 for the walls and 10 for the slab and slab edge.

All existing AC was removed as were all the old steam radiators – which were then recycled. The majority of the heating and cooling loads are met by Geothermal heat pumps served by 4 closed-loop vertical heat exchangers – 375 feet deep. The entire system is zoned to allow control in 13 different areas of the house. Under-floor radiant systems supply supplemental heating in the Kitchen and bathrooms.

Short Beach Residence

Home, Merit Award, Short Beach Residence, Branford, CT

This project is a single-family residence on a restored river-side site. The small, sensitive site had contained a condemned, burned-out house and a spontaneous dump along its wetlands. With the guidance of Lindsay Suter Architect, the owners attempted to restore the site and accommodate a 4-member family with as little adverse impact as possible. The efficient, box-like form of the 2,000 sf. house used S.I.Ps on the walls and roof. The ridge of the roof was shifted southward to provide a better angle for the roof-mounted photovoltaic (PV) system.

  • The homes' spatial arrangement is also very important in the sustainability of the whole project.
  • The upstairs corridor is outlined by skylights, enabling the house to be completely lit only using daylight. The skylights are operable for passive ventilation via wind or stack effect and all upstairs rooms have operable transoms over their doors, ensuring cross ventilation and passive air exhausting in summertime.
  • The roof-mounted PV system makes an annual surplus of over 1,800 kWh of electricity per year, which gets fed back to the grid.
  • The 4 solar hot water panels provide the domestic hot water have been resurrected from the days of the Carter Administration. Natural gas is the backup and is used for cooking and clothes drying.
  • One of the judges' favorite measures in the house is the interior rain barrel. Which is filled by exterior gutters and gravity fed to the dual-flush toilets.

The judges acknowledge the project team's extra attention to where materials were sourced from to ensure the indoor air was as healthy as possible. Even the stone countertop in the kitchen was tested for radon.

Stepping Stones Museum for Children Energy Sculptures

CTGBC Green Advocate Award, Stepping Stones Museum for Children

Stepping Stones Children's Museum is the winner of the CTGBC Green Advocate Award for 2011. They are committed to promoting and practicing environmental stewardship and sustainability while broadening and enriching the lives of all who visit.

As a regionally-focused, community learning organization, the museum plays a key role in providing visitors, students, groups, adults and community members with different energy-themed experiences. The museum achieves this through hands-on exhibits that deliver environmentally-focused messages and highlights the use of sustainable materials throughout the building.

Some of the energy-focused exhibit experiences include the Energy Lab which focuses on energy and resources. The Conservation Quest which focuses on energy conservation and environmental health. The Rainforest Adventure is a multisensory exhibition that introduces children to tropical rainforests around the world and demonstrates the various challenges facing these unique systems as well as the different ways to make a difference. The museum recently collaborated with the Rainforest Alliance and Ruckus Media to create an exhibit-related app for kids called Rainforest Survival Challenge. And Build It! which is where children can design and build with blocks, decorate a home and learn about the building and construction process and architectural design.

The Community Garden offers the whole community a chance to explore and enjoy the outdoor world. Visitors can stroll through six mini-garden areas. In addition, a trio of uniquely designed and whimsical sculptures uses solar, wind and water energy to produce a lively concert of musical sounds.

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