NAVFAC Building 33

General Information

Exterior photo of Buildings 33 and Quadrangle Buildings
  • Building Name: Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Headquarters Building, Buildings 33 and Quadrangle Buildings
  • Building Location: Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC, USA
  • Project Size (ft², m²): 156,000 gross square feet
  • Building Type(s): Office building
  • Project Type: Renovation/Modernization
  • Delivery Method: Design/Build (Bridging)
  • Total Building Costs: $21,000,000 renovation
  • Owner: Naval District Washington, Washington DC
    • Contact: Public Works Officer, (202) 685-8000
  • Building Architect/Project Team/Contacts:
    • Client: Naval Facilities Engineering Command Engineering Field Activity, Chesapeake (NAVFAC EFA CHES)
    • Tenants: Naval Facilities Engineering Command Headquarters, Washington, DC
    • Contact: Office of Engineering, NAVFACENGCOMHQ. Also Navy Office of the Judge Advocate General (OJAG)
    • Design Architect: Ewing Cole Cherry Brott, Philadelphia/Washington, DC
    • Design-Build Contractor: The Sherman R. Smoot Company, Washington, DC
    • Contact: Bruce Spengler
    • Architect of Record (in association with the design-build contractor): Shalom Baranes Associates, Washington, DC
    • Contact: Barry Habib
    • Sustainable Development Program Coordination: Michael G. Chapman, AIA, Senior Architect for Design Policy and Architecture, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Headquarters Office, Washington Navy Yard, 1322 Patterson Ave. SE, Washington, DC 20374


A. Project Description

The project, completed in July, 1998, is located in the Washington Navy Yard, an historic district in Washington, DC, and included complete renovation of four existing historic industrial structures and construction of one new linking structure for office, conference, and support spaces. The project consists of an "L" shaped main building linked to a cluster of three smaller courtyard buildings, providing approximately 156,000 gross square feet of office and conference space, as follows:

  • Building 33—Built in 1850, this was originally a 45-foot high open bay factory building. Now, it is essentially a building within a building: a four-story structure providing general office space on three floors, with the fourth floor constructed within the roof trusses providing library, storage, and mechanical space.
  • Building 109—A three-story structure providing conference rooms and general office space.
  • Building 39—A two-story structure providing general office space.
  • Building 37—A two-story structure providing restrooms, locker rooms, and storage.
  • Link Building—A new three-story open atrium structure providing a first-floor multi-use area, stairs to three levels, and connecting walkways on three levels between buildings.

The existing buildings had been large, open manufacturing facilities, so extensive remodeling was required. A small "lean-to" building attached to Building 33 was demolished, which enhanced the daylighting opportunities. The demolition waste was recycled to the fullest extent possible.

B. Project Goals

Interior photo of courtyard

Interior courtyard view

Overall Project Goal/Philosophy

Building 33 was selected for modernization in order to reduce government expenditures by eliminating rental space requirements and fully utilizing government owned properties in accordance with Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) legislation. In addition, this project was selected as a pilot project to examine the impacts of "green" building design and implementation strategies on facility delivery and performance, and the financial impacts it would have over the life cycle of the facility.

Accessible Goal

Design and construct the existing facilities to meet requirements for accessibility in accordance with the latest Uniform Facilities Accessibility Standards (UFAS) and Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG).

Aesthetic Goal

Maintain consistent architectural appearance respecting the historic nature of the building shell, and the overall congruency of the Washington Navy Yard. Interior was designed to reflect a modern, high quality level of office appearance and function.

Cost-Effective Goal

Reduce the annual energy costs as much as possible utilizing innovative and integrated building systems design, while creating a high performance work environment that enhances overall productivity.

Functional Goal

Create a fully functional and flexible work environment that will accommodate spatial and organizational change with reduced churn cost.

Historic Preservation Goal

In order to adapt this 1850's manufacturing facility to a modern office facility a radical change to the internal systems was necessary, so the outward character was the sole focus of the preservation efforts. The goals focused on historic masonry, window and roof integrity, allowing roof skylight penetrations to occur on the courtside only.

Productive Goal

Maximize visual access to the natural light afforded by the historic, large windows that served the building for 150 years, then design for flexibility in office arrangement infrastructure and connectivity.

Secure/Safe Goal

Located on the Washington Navy Yard, security levels are accommodated on a yard-wide basis, but added building access security is provided by card-key readers at all doors. The latest fire protection standards and systems were employed with a focus on the safety of the occupants.

Sustainable Goal

Building 33 was a pilot project for "green" building design and construction for the U.S. Navy. A goal was to incorporate as many of the strategies of sustainable design that had been identified at the time of design and were affordable by the established budget. The ultimate goal was to reduce life cycle costs, waste and pollution generation while enhancing the work environment for greater employee health and productivity.

Other Significant Aspects Of The Project

This historic building had 100 years of industrial use with processes that contributed to local environmental degradation. The "brownfield" qualities of soil and acquifer pollution were remediated to the greatest extent practicable beneath the area of the building. The "green" strategies incorporated in this project set a course for the design and construction of a Navy project with one million square feet of office complex on the Navy Yard that included adaptive reuse of two more industrial buildings. The Office of the Environmental Executive (OFEE) recognized the valuable contributions of these projects and awarded the Naval District Washington the 2003 Closing the Circle Award for "Sustainable Design/Green Buildings in Adaptive Reuse".

The project was completed using a "design/build bridging" methodology, which entailed selecting an initial A/E firm (A/E #1) to develop the preliminary design documents, and then soliciting competitive bids from design/build teams (Contractor and A/E #2) to perform the construction. The initial design work did not incorporate sustainable design; the request for sustainability was issued as part of the solicitation for the design/build package, based on a "greening study" performed by A/E #1. The greening study resulted from a sustainable design charrette involving the Navy and a "green" design team representing architects, engineers, and sustainability experts, selected and coordinated by Dr. Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute. From this collaborative, integrated charrette, a list of "greening opportunities" was generated.

Interior photo

Interior view

The fact that this project primarily involved the adaptive reuse of existing historic structures established some constraints. First, the character of the exterior had to remain as is, which meant that the existing single-pane windows had to remain in place, and whatever space was to be placed in the building had to fit within the existing shell. Second, the design had to meet requirements of the Historic Preservation Office, National Capitol Planning Commission, and Commission of Fine Arts as well as the Navy Design Criteria. Third, the project budget, which was not based on sustainable design techniques (which sometimes result in a higher first cost in order to save money in the long run), was fixed. This led to decisions to use only cost-effective ideas, use only technology that was available "off the shelf", and to save energy only if it improved the comfort and health of the building occupants. Because of the implementation of integrated design techniques, some materials or systems that had higher first costs were able to be incorporated, due to trade-offs, that is, areas where money was saved.

The initial goals were to adaptively reuse the historic buildings and to create a flexible, comfortable professional working environment for 550 people. Following the design charrette and greening study by A/E #1, additional goals to incorporate sustainable features were adopted. The proposing design/build teams were given the list of "greening opportunities" and asked to include in their bid not only their price, but also which sustainable strategies they would incorporate in the project, either from the list or strategies that they may have come up with. In addition, a DOE BLAST energy model of the building performed by A/E #1 established the target energy budget for the project. A/E#2 was required to submit a BLAST run with their proposal, which was in turn reviewed by A/E#1 for verification purposes.

The decision was made to "green" the building because NAVFAC had been promoting sustainable design, and wanted to teach by example on their own headquarters. Additionally, since this project was the first of its kind for the Navy, papers have been authored and lectures given by those involved. Sustainable design is now mandated in all NAVFAC building projects.

The project was funded under the Base Realignment and Closure initiative. The directive to implement sustainable strategies came from the Undersecretary of the Navy, with the expectation was that the sustainable strategies would be cost-effective. The initial analysis indicates that the additional project cost was .005% increase, and will be recouped in the first year. The payback period, based on an $85,000 increase first cost, with an anticipated energy savings of $130,000 was less than 8 months. The building cost $21,000,000 total to construct, including all costs, fees, etc. Sustainability measures were estimated at $85,000 more expensive in terms of first cost than "standard" measures, but the project was completed within the Navy's budget.


Overview Of Process

Pre-Design/Planning Activities

As part of the Base Realignment and Closure requirement, special planning that brought this project into the program was performed. No particular variation for establishing other requirements was performed, and no consideration for sustainable design or "greening" strategies and technologies was budgeted.

Design Activities

The adaptive reuse of Building 33 was designed under the typical Design-Bid-Build processes, approaching 100% design. The decision to incorporate sustainable design technologies came from the Under Secretary of the Navy through NAVFAC after the CD documents were already developed. This was consistent with the already ongoing sustainable design initiative. The need for a pilot project program had already been identified, as good model programs after which the Navy could pattern its program could not be located. The interest of the Under Secretary of the Navy added a significant boost to the program. Also, the funds to complete the project had been allocated without consideration of sustainable design. So the goal was to award the contract to the design/build team that could meet the budget while incorporating the maximum number of sustainable design strategies. A significant consideration was the desire to accomplish this without increasing the first cost of the project—a philosophy that had been presented to the Navy by the Rocky Mountain Institute, but which had not been adequately tested on ordinary projects. Radical changes in the strategies that had been incorporated in the original design had to be re-evaluated. To accomplish this, the project was taken back to the 35% design package and a "greening" charrette was performed, including experts in the field, to identify opportunities for improvements toward that goal.

The "Greening" Charrette. In the greening study design charrette, the participants worked together to come up with concepts collectively in an integrated way, as opposed to on their own. The "Greening Plan—Opportunities and Parameters", developed from the charrette, had identified the following as "opportunities" to be considered by the proposing design/build teams:

  1. Use of super glazing at new windows and skylights
  2. Use of reflective blinds at windows
  3. Installation of light diffusers at skylights
  4. Installation of a reflective barrier on roof under shingles
  5. Construction of light shelves at windows
  6. Decrease in the "U" values at walls and roofs (increasing the "R" value)
  7. Installation of revolving doors at primary entrances on Patterson Ave. and the courtyard
  8. Use of indirect lighting (from fixtures as well as daylighting)
  9. Provide additional daylighting on the 4th floor library with skylights
  10. Use high efficiency HVAC and related equipment
  11. Use high efficiency chiller
  12. Use high efficiency cooling tower
  13. Use variable speed cooling tower fan motors
  14. Reduce fan power requirements by reducing both pressure drops on fans and the coil face velocities and by increasing duct sizes
  15. Reduce pump power requirements
  16. Reduce pressure drops on pumps by increasing pipe sizes and reducing the number of bends
  17. Use the area under the raised floor as a supply air plenum for HVAC distribution in lieu of an overhead VAV system
  18. Use high efficiency elevator system motors
  19. Reduce ambient lighting levels from 50fc to 30fc
  20. Revise open office perimeter accent lighting to be consistent with the 30fc ambient light level
  21. Revise lighting design to accommodate the skylights on the 4th floor, if additional skylights are provided
  22. Use more energy efficient lighting fixtures (i.e. compact fluorescent) in toilet rooms
  23. Use more energy efficient lighting at entrance and elevator lobbies
  24. Use automatic sensor systems that both dim and turn off lights in response to daylighting at open office area, private offices, and the library
  25. Use automatic occupancy sensors of the active ultrasonic (motion detector) or passive infrared type at private offices and the library
  26. Use automatic occupancy sensors of the hybrid type (active ultrasonic and passive infrared technology) for light fixtures in toilet rooms
  27. Reduce VOC (volatile organic compound) emissions by:
    1. Using materials that do not contain formaldehyde
    2. Minimizing the use of adhesives that contain styrene butadiene latex and other VOCs
    3. Using low solvent or water-based adhesives in lieu of solvent adhesives
    4. Requiring paints without aromatic hydrocarbons, halogenated solvents, mercury or mercury compounds, lead, or other heavy metals
  28. Encapsulate all glass fiber insulation
  29. Minimize construction waste
  30. Recycle construction and demolition materials
  31. Use construction products that include recycled materials in their content
  32. Perform purging of indoor air after installation of "wet" materials and prior to the installation of gas absorbing materials without using the HVAC system
Photo of interior entrance

Interior entrance view

The project was contracted under a Design/Build methodology, with the constructor involved with the final selection of systems and materials to be incorporated. From the list of opportunities, the proposing design/build teams worked together to incorporate as many goals as possible in their technical proposal. Each proposer was required to submit a DOE BLAST energy analysis run with their proposal, which was in turn reviewed by the design A-E for verification purposes. The winning design/build team was selected as part of a "best value" process that provides for consideration of both technical proposal and associated cost.

Construction Activities

Waste from demolition and construction was recycled. The specific materials recycled were not monitored by the owner nor reported by the contractor. Removal of all interior structure and harmful materials that made up the building and site beneath it was a major undertaking. For the most part, construction was fairly typical, although the actual occupancy date was delayed by approximately 2 months from that originally anticipated, due to unforeseen conditions encountered during construction. The new internal office floors were formed up and poured independent of the historic masonry perimeter walls. The Navy's construction office representatives and contractor's quality control representatives were responsible for construction administration.

Operations/Maintenance Activities

Operations and Maintenance manuals were produced by equipment manufacturers and subcontractors. Preventative maintenance inspections are performed on a regular basis by the Navy to address functional maintenance, and a cyclic maintenance program is performed each year to address aesthetic upkeep.

MWR (Morale, Welfare and Recreation) coordinates recyclables collections in the Washington Navy Yard. Collection containers are placed in the coffee mess areas. There is a program in place on the campus for recycling of aluminum cans, white paper, newspapers, cardboard, wood, and metal.

Post-Occupancy Evaluation Activities

An energy analysis project took place between December 1999 and December 2000. The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) gathered energy data and analyzed the effects of "greening" strategies against an office building of standard construction. The results in brief are shown later in this study. The past three years the meters have remained in place. A project will begin in the winter 2003 to download the recorded data since 2000 and analyze the performance of Building 33 over that period.

Information and Tools


DOE BLAST (Building Loads Analysis and System Thermodynamics) energy modeling software

Products and Systems

Some cost estimating with life cycle considerations was performed in the greening study. The materials used did comply with the criterion for CFC/HCFC/Halon/VOC elimination.

The following materials incorporating recycled content were included in this project:

  • Site furnishings include recycled plastic
  • Geo-textile and waterproofing materials include recycled plastic
  • Bricks were refurbished and reused from the demolition project on the site
  • CMU incorporated fly ash in the cement mix
  • Concrete incorporated fly ash in the cement mix
  • Carpet contains recycled plastic
  • Gypsum wallboard contains recycled gypsum
  • Joint filler
  • Ceiling tiles include recycled newsprint

Energy Issues

Energy Use Description

The energy targets were established by A/E #1 using a BLAST modeling run. The base case building was designed to surpass ASHRAE 90.1, and it was anticipated that the sustainable building design would use 30% less energy annually than the base case design.

The strategies implemented in order to save energy included increasing insulation levels in the roof and walls, super windows, high-efficiency indirect lighting, and task lighting that reduced ambient lighting levels from 50 fc to 35 fc, perforated blinds to assist in daylighting the space, lighting controls such as occupancy sensors and photoelectric dimming at the building perimeter, and borrowed light to help light adjacent spaces. This resulted in a substantially reduced electric load and reduced anticipated plug loads. As a result, the chiller and associated HVAC equipment, piping, ductwork, and HVAC feeder sizes could be reduced.

The shallow cross section of the building allows for good daylight penetration, and the courtyard configuration allows for natural light from both sides. Also, skylights were installed in the courtyard side of the roof of Building 33. (No skylights were allowed on the street side due to historic constraints). The south wall of the link incorporated heat mirror glazing that minimizes heat gain. Additional sun control is accomplished with horizontal louver blinds. The blinds are perforated to allow for view and some daylight penetration.

Natural ventilation is a typical strategy for achieving energy efficiency, however, since this building is a historical facility the existing fixed windows were retained. Ventilation is accomplished through mechanical means.

The fixed windows did help, however, to create a "super window" effect. Double glazed insulating glass was installed inside of the existing glazing creating a high thermal performance with over 12" of overall thickness. A suspended coated film (SCF) glazing product (heat mirror) was used in the link building windows and skylights. In both cases; the new glazing and the retrofit, high performance was achieved.

Increased wall and roof insulation was accomplished by building a "building within a building", constructing new insulated wall and roof assemblies inside of the existing historic shell.

A direct/indirect lighting system was used throughout. Ambient lighting levels were reduced from 50 fc to 30 fc with task lighting being included at workstations. Energy efficient fluorescent lamps were used throughout. Dimmers and occupancy sensors were installed at the building perimeter, toilet rooms, storage spaces, and private spaces respectively to save lighting energy consumption. High-efficiency outdoor site lighting was also installed.

Chillers were able to be downsized from 500 to 330 tons, due to a reduction in building cooling loads resulting from the lower energy use by lights and equipment, and increased insulation levels. Also, high-efficiency, variable speed motors were installed, and piping, ductwork, and HVAC equipment feeder sizes were reduced. The significant cost savings here provided for many of the other sustainable features which, in some cases, had a higher first cost.

Heating is provided by the campus' existing steam system, and is used in winter months for water heating. In the summer, water heating is accomplished by electric water heaters.

All plumbing fixtures (toilets, urinals, showers, faucets, and drinking fountains) are "low-flow". No lead solder or pipes were used in the building.

The only systems commissioned were the HVAC, elevator, and UPS (uninterruptable power supply). The contractor was required to submit a plan for commissioning, based on the ASHRAE standard, far in advance of project completion. This was not done, and the actual commissioning fell short of what the client expected. Fortunately, the Navy does feel that the systems do operate fairly well, although there are some areas in the building that are either too hot or too cold due to less than optimal HVAC.

Metering and monitoring energy data collection occurred in the twelve month period between December 1999 and December 2000. For analysis, the Building 33 complex as constructed was compared with a baseline "standard" facility that would not have the greening strategies employed. Overall, the sustainable design features in Building 33 as described here resulted in an estimated 15% annual energy savings and an annual energy cost savings estimate of $58,000 compared to a hypothetical Building 33 designed without the sustainable design strategies. Table S.1 below details the savings by major energy end use category. The greatest savings came from the mechanical system and downsized chiller. With the reduced overhead lighting levels in Building 33, task lighting energy consumption in Building 33 increased significantly over the baseline building because of the increased use of task lighting to meet the lighting needs in the individual work areas.

Table S.1 Annual Energy Savings Estimate for Building 33 from Sustainable Design Concepts

End UseBldg. 33Baseline BuildingSavings
Electric (kWh)3,999,6484,723,58415%
    Plugs (kWh)397,788397,7880%
    Overhead Lighting (kWh)565,380580,2844%
    Task Lighting (kWh)112,69293,324-21%
    Chiller (kWh)2,593,2003,234,00020%
    Mechanical System (kWh)330,588418,18821%
Steam (MMbtu)422,777422,7770%

General office equipment, personal computers, and printers are a significant load in an office/administrative building. However, none of the sustainable design concepts implemented in Building 33 specifically targeted this type of equipment, so no change in the plug load is expected between the baseline building and Building 33.

Differences between Building 33 and the baseline building envelope that impact the heating requirement were minimal and steam usage in the two buildings was assumed to be the same.

The sustainable design strategies incorporated in the building design and the opportunities to improve the overall building performance were constrained. Because of the historical significance of the original structure, the character of the exterior shell had to be unchanged and the design had to meet the requirements of the Historic Preservation Office, National Capitol Planning Commission, and Commission of Fine Arts, as well as Navy Design Criteria. Additionally, the project budget that had already been fixed (without any sustainable design concepts) could not be impacted by any additional cost design changes. This led to the decision to use only cost-effective, readily available technologies that could save energy and improve the comfort and health of the building occupants. Because sustainable design methodology is an integrated decision making process, some enhanced performance technologies that had higher first-costs were incorporated in the final mix due to their effect of reducing the requirements and first cost of other building system technologies.

All of the measurement and verification methods for determining energy savings from the sustainable design strategies are based on the same principle-energy savings are derived by comparing the energy usage of Building 33 with sustainable design technologies to the energy use of an identical baseline building with current industry standard construction and operated under the same conditions.

Therefore, energy savings could only be inferred based on assumptions about a hypothetical baseline building energy consumption¹. Where appropriate, Building 36 (a similar, opposite hand structure in the Sanger Quadrangle) was used as the proxy for the baseline building energy use. Engineering analysis and adjustments as warranted were used to adjust the Building 36 energy usage for differences in design, occupancy, and schedules between the two buildings.

¹Measurement and Verification (M&V) Guidelines for Federal Energy Projects, U.S. Department of Energy, February 1996.

Indoor Environment

Indoor Environment Approach

Preferred indoor environmental quality conditions were developed by the owner and design/build team with regard to air, lighting, noise, and health. ASHRAE standards were used to establish IAQ and thermal comfort levels.

To assure air quality, asbestos was eliminated from the existing buildings during demolition, and smoking is banned inside the renovated building. Also, VOCs, CFCs, HCFCs, and Halon were minimized in construction. Finally, a pre-occupancy purging was called for, that required a complete flushing of the building's air after all wet materials were installed, but prior to installation of any absorbent material, without using the building's HVAC system.

Currently, there is no official IAQ Management Plan in place to assure continued compliance with standards. There are, however, carbon monoxide sensors throughout the building, and chemicals are stored in appropriate containers. Additionally, the main entrance lobbies have a walk-off mat to minimize particulate materials in the building that would contribute to diminished air quality, as well as wear and tear on flooring materials.

High quality lighting was achieved with direct/indirect fluorescent fixtures at an ambient light level of 30fc. Levels of 50fc or more on work surfaces are achieved with task lighting and daylit areas.

Noise control and privacy are areas receiving mixed reviews. Some occupants (especially those who came from private offices) complain of not enough acoustic privacy. This is partly due to the partial height partitions, but also to the fact that the HVAC system is very quiet. On the other hand, some appreciate the acoustic silence, and feel that people speak softer because of the open office. Also, some appreciated the visual connection with each other.

In addition to the direct design of IEQ measures, strategies such as using a raised floor system and modular offices help to minimize debris as a result of frequent moves of personnel from one office to another.

Project Results

A. Lessons Learned

The primary benefits of the effort include:

  • Anticipated energy savings of $130,000 per year
  • Additional savings in maintenance and remodeling costs due to the raised floor system, systems furniture and carpet tiles
  • High-quality lighting, reducing eye strain and fatigue
  • Good indoor air quality promoting health and productivity
  • Improved connection to nature
  • High thermal comfort
  • Enhanced communication and flexibility because of the open plan.

Constraints that were encountered include:

  • Existing historic building character had to be maintained. Therefore, a building within a building was constructed, with insulated walls, roof, and windows.
  • Existing windows had to be retained. New, insulating, double-pane windows were installed inside of the existing windows, resulting in highly efficient, effective triple glazing. However, the head heights of the windows were fixed, forcing a low head height on the second floor.
  • Reduced HVAC loads resulted in an unacceptably low volume of airflow within the internal zones. It was therefore perceived that HVAC sizing could not be minimized as much as desired.
  • The HVAC reheating system was designed to utilize steam heat. However, the steam system is turned off for the summer months. In the fall, if there is a cold day prior to the steam system's start-up, the HVAC system blows out cold air. This problem is being resolved using an electric boiler for a reheat system when the steam system is shut down.
  • The interior walls were spray painted originally with a thin, high gloss paint. When a spot needs to be repainted, a brush and/or roller are used, and the touch-up does not match the existing finish. So, often, entire walls are repainted when only a touch-up was needed.
  • The interior paint colors selected do not match the typical colors used on previous projects. Therefore, separate cans of paint must be kept for touch-up.
  • The carpet tiles used are a different size than the access hatch in the raised floor system. Therefore, when access is desired, several carpet tiles around the hatch must be taken up.

Lessons learned include:

  • Actual operating conditions can vary from the modeled conditions, and the effective energy savings are affected. The calculated energy cost savings was $130,000 per year. Metered, actual energy savings achieved less than half of that, primarily due to variations in operating hours, temperature range set points and commitment to assuring the design strategies were well understood by staff and occupants.
  • Need to clearly define the sustainable goals. Many terms were too vague, creating confusion on specific requirements.
  • Should be less prescriptive regarding sustainable design in the RFP. This would allow more creative solutions on the part of the design/build team.
  • Need to monitor the contractor's performance to verify compliance with sustainable initiatives.
  • Open office areas need to have acoustic privacy addressed.
  • In some areas, the corridor in open office areas had reduced light levels. This bothered some occupants sitting next to the corridors and they felt that a consistent light level should be maintained throughout the open office area.
  • Some feel that the partitions are too tall, so as to be a hindrance to communication.

This project was a quantum leap forward for the Navy in implementing sustainable design. The improvements in building energy performance, indoor environmental quality, resource efficiency, and waste minimization have established a new standard for government facility design. The fact that this building houses NAVFAC's headquarters will allow Naval designers the opportunity to study first hand which strategies work and which need improvement—not only the specific sustainability strategies, but construction contracting procedures as well. It is in both of these areas that opportunities lay for achieving even greater degrees of sustainability on future projects.

First, in the area of sustainable design principles, increased design integration among architects and engineers should yield even lower energy usage levels. This would include optimally designed building envelopes (considering thermal and daylighting strategies) combined with the most efficient electrical and lighting systems (including efficient equipment and realistic demand assumptions) followed by HVAC system design incorporating not only the most advanced technology, but accurate sizing assumptions as well.

Another strategy to consider is to review specifications to assure that they are in agreement with the stated sustainable design goals. There are often contradictory directions resulting from lack of coordination between general goals and specific, outdated requirements.

One of the most significant opportunities offered by this project is the ability to learn by direct measurement and comparison how successful the energy efficient strategies are that have been incorporated. Building 33 is being monitored for its energy performance, as is Building 36, the building forming the other half of the quadrangle. This will provide extremely valuable data in determining the effectiveness of the energy efficient strategies and in planning and designing future projects. This kind of measurement and verification is a crucial step in learning from experience in order to refine the design process.

In the area of procedural modifications, the first obvious step is to incorporate sustainable design from the project's inception. The opportunity to achieve the greatest level of sustainability is in the beginning. The gains realized in this project could have been even greater had the mandate for sustainability come sooner. Related to that issue, the general requirements for sustainable design should be clearly stated; i.e. energy performance targets, material and resource efficiency, lighting levels, etc. To achieve this goal, consideration should be given to using an objective sustainability rating system, such as the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Building Rating System.

Another recommended procedural modification is to determine more accurately on what assumptions decisions are being made. A clear understanding of the base's operating procedures could have prevented this problem.

Next, a verification procedure of the contractor's compliance with sustainable requirements should be established. Since commissioning is vital to a building performing as designed, adherence to this procedure is strongly recommended. Given that these sustainable requirements are relatively new contractual obligations, the Navy needs to establish some means of site supervision and enforcement measures to verify compliance.

B. Ratings

No ratings applied for or received to date.

C. Awards

  1. "Commanders Award for Design Excellence" in the 1999 NAVFAC Design Awards Program (the "grand prize" award for NAVFAC)
  2. Recognized by the Washington Chapter of The American Institute of Architects with an Honor Award for Design in 2000
  3. 2003 Closing the Circle Award for "Sustainable Design/Green Buildings in Adaptive Reuse" from the Office of the Environmental Executive (OFEE)

D. Publishing