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ConstructionPro Week, Volume: Construction Advisor Today - Issue: 31 - 11/25/2009

Tremendous Interest Reported for Upcoming High-Performance Building Standard

There has been "tremendous interest" in a soon-to-be-published Standard 189.1, which addresses the design of green buildings other than low-rise residential buildings, American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Presidential Member Kent Peterson told GBI. ASHRAE is developing the standard with the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).

 

The proposed standard will cover the total building sustainability package, including the design and commissioning and plans for high-performance operation and other areas. The standard also will address site location, energy use, and recycling. It is expected to become the first code-intended commercial green building standard in the United States. "Given the strong interest and need in the building industry for a set of minimum code requirements related to green building design and construction, ASHRAE, IESNA and USGBC are hopeful the standard will be widely adopted, similar to the adoption of Standard 90.1," according to Peterson, who chairs the ASHRAE/IESNA/USGBC 189.1P Committee. "[Standard 90.1], since being developed in the 1970s, serves as the U.S. model code for energy efficiency in buildings. There has also been tremendous interest in Standard 189.1 from countries outside North America."

 

Fourth Public Review Period Ends
Proposal developers earlier this month closed the fourth public review for the standard. At least 22 comments were submitted with no apparent common thread in the comments, Peterson said.

 

The standard development committee will meet to review comments received during the "independent substantive change" public review. Peterson believes the standard will be published sometime early next year. The standard then could be adopted into local codes.

 

ASHRAE reported that the draft's biggest proposed changes are in the exterior light pollution section, which aims to eliminate the Total Site Lumen approach. An earlier draft that went out for a third public review earlier this year would have required users to limit exterior lighting according to one of three methods for determining total initial lamp lumens, or light output, for all outdoor lighting.

 

While site lumen limits are being explored in other model lighting pollution efforts, it complicates application and enforcement significantly, according to Nick Ferzacca, committee vice chairperson and IES representative.

 

The current draft maintains the use of backlight, uplight, and glare ratings from the IES Luminaire Classification System for Outdoor Luminaires (IESNA TM-15-07). Also, exterior lighting power densities and lighting zone definitions were modified to align with recent ASHRAE 90.1 addenda. 

 

Another proposed change is in the Outdoor Air Delivery Monitoring section. Under the proposal, measurement of outdoor airflow rates at the system level would be required for all spaces ventilated by mechanical systems except for constant volume systems. The exception allowing carbon dioxide monitoring as an alternative for systems serving only densely occupied spaces has been removed. Also proposed would be removal of all requirements for outdoor airflow monitoring in naturally ventilated spaces.

 

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