Magnify Credit Union - South Lakeland Branch
- Building Name: Magnify Credit Union - South Lakeland Branch
- Building Location:
- City: Lakeland
- State: Florida
- Country: USA
- Project Size (ft², m²): 4,151 sq. ft.
- Building Type(s): Commercial
- Project Type: Financial Institution
- Total Building Costs: $2,378,937 Cost/ft²: $573/SF
- Owner: Magnify Credit Union
- Building Architect/Project Team: Straughn Trout Architects, LLC
- Project Contact Person: Tim Hoeft, LEED AP
The design of this flagship branch for a recently re-branded credit union aligns with the client's mission of financial education and environmental awareness. As an intervention in a suburban environment without any sense of place or true historical president, style and form become dictated by the sustainable functions of the facility as well as the operational activities of the occupants. Programmatic flexibility of both private and public spaces weaves the project into the local community fabric by providing a place for events that can develop its identity over time. Re-evaluating the owner's "standard business model" transforms the interior organization of spatial relationships made possible by recent technological equipment. The new branch credit union is located on a previously developed site and was designed to wrap around an existing building that is the home of a "neighborhood favorite" ice cream shop. This unique pairing increases the area's development density while minimizing changes to infrastructure and local traffic patterns. While only minor cosmetic changes will be made to the ice cream shop, the finished project will portray two buildings, two businesses embracing each other in a symbiotic relationship. The project was completed in August of 2009.
The project's first sustainable action was to purchase this previously developed property in lieu of disturbing raw land. As with any context on the municipal fringe, the site for this project intermingles with developments and structures of varying program and occupation. Approximately ten miles from the nearest typical urban fabric, the primarily residential area has cultivated several nodes of local commerce that provide many "everyday" services. An elementary school is also within walking distance of the site, whose students strongly support the existing ice cream shop that anchors the chosen location for the project.
Overall Project Goal/Philosophy
The building has proven to require less operational costs, reduced maintenance, improved durability, enhanced safety and security, maximum functionality and accessibility, and unbeaten indoor environmental and experiential qualities. The property value is significantly increased due to its unique operating independence from the municipal utilities. The building's performance will undoubtedly be recognized as time progresses and the facility is better suited to experience a longer than average building life.
By keeping the adjacent ice cream shop in continual operation throughout the construction process, it became an ambassador for the new structure and business into the community. It also allowed visitors to witness the construction process up close increasing their awareness of the sustainable project.
- Re-locatable bollards around the member plaza area protect patrons from vehicle traffic during large outdoor events.
- Electronic teller cash recyclers:
- Eliminates open cash drawers completely
- Automates all cash transactions
- Detects unfit and counterfeit notes
- Stores cash in a vault-level steel safe
- Provides extended banking hour secure transactions
- Faster and more accurate transactions
- Reduced customer wait times
- Camera surveillance monitored off-site reduces facility vulnerability inherent in financial institutions.
- Fire alarm system includes sirens and strobes.
- Fail-safe emergency back-up lights throughout the facility.
- Biometric fingerprint door lock system secures non-public spaces.
- Bullet-proof glazing in drive-thru teller window.
- Exterior building shell (wall assemblies and glazing systems) comply with Florida Statues ensuring safety in a hurricane prone environment.
- Daylighting, on-site renewable energy (PV Blanket), a portable emergency generator transfer switch and rainwater harvesting (RWH) ensures the reliability of operational resources in the event of a natural disaster.
- Sealed storage for cleaning chemicals with a dedicated exhaust fan.
Optimize Site / Existing Structure Potential
- An existing 998 square foot ice cream shop occupied the site with ample paved parking and area for storm water retention. The existing structure and site infrastructure was not only preserved, but enhanced through sustainable design strategies. The project's mixed land use and development in an existing community are consistent with Smart Growth strategies.
- High tension power lines traverse the site's hypotenuse creating a 100' wide utility easement limiting the potential area for building construction. This area was used to bury underground rainwater cisterns, promote biodiversity across vegetated open space (a Smart Growth strategy), extend the outdoor Member Plaza area during events, and create a spatial buffer between the commercial buildings and the adjacent residential neighborhood. The resulting compact building design is also a Smart Growth strategy.
- The new structure's primary north/south orientation minimizes solar heat gain during cooling times (most of the year in central Florida).
- Maintaining continuous sidewalks and a pedestrian friendly site encourages the "walkable neighborhood" concept.
Optimize Energy Use
- This new facility was successfully designed as a ZERO ENERGY building. The synergy resulting from reduced energy loads, increased equipment efficiencies, and on-site photovoltaic (PV) renewable energy is reporting data that validates this classification. After recent sub-metering adjustments and system adjustments, the October 2010 energy statement from the municipal utility affirms that the building is generating more energy than it requires for operation
- Reduced energy loads were achieved through the following strategies:
- Passive cooling by using The "double roof" design created by elevating the "PV Blanket" above the building to provides passive cooling by deferring direct heat gain on the building through natural convection.
- Solar reflective roofing membrane, large roof overhangs, sunshades, high-performance insulated glazing units and increased wall insulation reduces solar heat gain.
- Natural daylighting reduces artificial illumination requirements
- Digital daylighting controls use live data to dim compact fluorescent fixtures as well as occupancy sensors.
- Energy Star labeled appliances.
- Building systems commissioning.
- A 58kW roof-mounted PV array (309 panels) has generated over 50MWh of electricity to date.
Protect and Conserve Water
- Low-flow water fixtures including faucets and water closets reduce water use by 45% when compared to a similar conventional building.
- Landscape design strategies including native "Florida Friendly" vegetation and a micro irrigation system reduces the water required for irrigation by 51% when compared to a similar conventional design.
- All building roof areas are utilized to harvest rainwater. A series of cistern tanks and filters provide more than double the water required for flushing and irrigation.
Use Environmentally Preferable Products
- Many of the interior finish materials were selected due to their high recycled content including carpet systems, porcelain tile flooring, recycled glass wall tiles, rubber flooring with shredded and cleaned tire rubber, recycled aluminum mill work panels, and counter tops of recycled paper that include inlays of bamboo, recycled credit cards and recycled currency.
- Sixteen percent (16%) of materials (by cost) were extracted and manufactured within a 500 mile radius of the project, reducing the need for excessive transportation fuel.
Enhanced Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ)
- The Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) management plan during construction included:
- Protection of on-site stored building materials.
- Carpets, pads and other products with off-gassing characteristics were opened and aired for at least one week before installed inside the building.
- HVAC equipment was protected from weather prior to installation.
- Daily replacement of return air filters (MERV 8) for all HVAC equipment operating during construction.
- Low-emitting materials including adhesives, sealants, paints, wood stains, carpet systems and composite wood systems were chosen to reduce or eliminate volatile organic compound (VOC) off-gassing.
- Indoor cleaning chemicals are contained in a sealed closet with a dedicated exhaust fan. A permanently installed entry system captures dirt and particulates from entering the building.
Optimize Operational and Maintenance Practices
- The building owners and operators were included in the integrated design process and were also given one-on-one operational instructions from the commissioning authority.
- Energy and water metering devices were installed to track the building's sustainable initiatives.
- This project is the fourth branch designed by the same architectural firm for this client. This invaluable experience with the client and their specific program ensured that the project would meet and exceed the owner's performance objectives and functional needs. The relationship between the designers and the users also facilitated clear coordination of project team member roles and responsibilities. Open discussion of "lessons learned" on previous projects added to the efficiency functionality of the facility.
- Architectural programming for the project was based on previous branch designs and enhanced to meet added sustainability requirements and account for recent technological advancements that relate to the owner's service delivery concept.
- Exterior load-bearing walls create the open floor plan that provides benefits of sustainability, accessibility, safety, energy and material savings, and interior environmental quality by allowing daylight to penetrate into the core of the structure.
- An open mechanical mezzanine provides ample space for building systems and technologies including communications & IT infrastructure, HVAC equipment, rainwater harvesting (RWH) equipment, and on-site renewable energy equipment and monitors. Locating this equipment on the mezzanine also reduces the impact of noise and radiation to building occupants and creates a more efficient use of the grade level floor area for daily occupant operations.
- This space also provides configuration flexibility for future technologies. The mezzanine also has a dedicated exterior access point in the event that large equipment needs to be remove or replaced.
- Organized and integrated design and installation of all building systems enhances future operations and management (O&M) and serviceability.
- Integrated high-tech remote HVAC control and security systems are consistent with the owner's other branches and provide safety, convenience and efficient facility management.
- A third-party Commissioning Authority (CxA) provided a complete analysis of building systems and ensured quality of construction and system installation (HVAC, PV, RWH). After one year of occupation, the CxA also provided a facility performance evaluation (FPE) to both the owner and the architect to confirm that the building is operating as designed and also document "lessons learned".
- "Transaction Pods" allow greater flexibility of use and adaptability and include an integrated 34" high accessible slide-out counter
- Grade level building entrances
- Accessible parking spaces adjacent to the building entrance
(Eliminates the need to cross parking lot traffic lanes)
- Several seating types and heights throughout the facility
- Simple and intuitive circulation
- Open floor plan provides:
- Space for use of assistive devices or personal assistance
- Allows visibility to most spaces aiding in facility wayfinding
- Future programmatic flexibility that extends building life
- Curbless shower and 100% of toilets meet ADA accessibility standards
- Through an Integrated Design Process, the project owners, users, designers, constructors, engineers and community members engaged in active, consistent, organized collaboration. The result was a facility that responds to the context, the environment, the program, and the community equally and efficiently.
- While no specific or historical architectural style was directly pursued, the building inherently portrays an ecological and programmatic "architecture parlante". Character and ornament is created through the project's sustainable features including overhangs and shading devices protecting clerestory and pedestrian level glazing, a south sloping roof of photovoltaic panels that harvests rainwater, and canopies that protect patrons in automobiles as well as those enjoying ice cream in the outdoor plaza.
- Glass, brick, and cement stucco where chosen as exterior finish materials because they are familiar in color, scale and texture to the surrounding context and community.
- The facade's transparency displays the interior functions of its users during the day. In the evenings when the building is typically unoccupied, colored lights extend the concept of constant activity and vitality embodied in the facility.
- Life-Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA) was used extensively throughout the design and construction process to maximize net savings when comparing initial construction costs with long term operating costs as well as qualitative benefits to building occupants. Specific examples include:
- The "Photovoltaic (PV) Blanket"
- Return On Investment (ROI) / Benefit/ Cost Ratio (BCR) comparison:
- Initial investment for the PV system (roof-mounted panels, inverters, additional electrical panels and meters, etc.); the additional construction costs of roof curbs; additional operations & maintenance (O&M) costs
- Long term cost savings benefits of on-site renewable energy; reduced HVAC demand due to the self-shading double roof; increased equipment life of HVAC due to reduced demand; increased material life of single-ply roofing system due to protection by the "PV Blanket" from the harsh Florida sun; increased property value
- Through a combination of energy modelling and cost analysis, it was estimated that the initial cost of the "PV Blanket" would equal the energy cost savings after approximately 15 years (assuming energy costs remained constant). The roof panels' manufacturer's warranty is 25 years. Therefore total net savings on energy alone is a minimum of 67% of energy cost over the 25 year period. Additional qualitative benefits include reduced dependence on the municipal electric company (which could be down for extended time periods in a hurricane-prone Florida environment).
- Return On Investment (ROI) / Benefit/ Cost Ratio (BCR) comparison:
- Daylighting Design
- Return On Investment (ROI) / Benefit/ Cost Ratio (BCR) comparison:
- Initial investment for the daylighting controls system (photo-sensors, dimming ballasts, controls, etc.); additional construction costs of system installation and high-performance glazing
- Long term cost savings benefits of reduce energy required for interior lighting; reduced O&M costs for lamp replacement; reduced heat load from interior light fixtures
- Estimated energy costs savings was far greater than the system first costs. As a banking institution, the facility's hours of operation are during daylight hours almost entirely year-round, therefore the daylighting system provides benefits almost 100% of the time the building is occupied.
- Return On Investment (ROI) / Benefit/ Cost Ratio (BCR) comparison:
- Exterior Finishes
- Brick reduces O&M costs for re-painting (required every 4 years in FL sun due to UV rays)
- High-Efficiency Split HVAC System
- Energy savings, longer equipment life, and increased system cost provide greater net savings than single system design
- The "Photovoltaic (PV) Blanket"
- Integrated Design Process provided cost management through Value Engineering throughout the design and construction phases with participation from local design and construction professionals who are knowledgeable and experienced within the site's immediate environmental, economic, and construction climates.
- Open floor plan is a cost-effective design solution because is reduces the total building area by reducing the number of individual offices and complimenting the owner's unique service delivery concept with a staff that is cross-trained in providing various services, which also reduces the total number of individuals required to staff the facility, therefore reducing their inherent demand on water and energy.
- Analysis of negative aspects of alternatives during project meetings clarified the intent of selected design and construction solutions and methodologies.
HISTORIC PRESERVATION GOAL
- While there are no structures on the site that meet established "historic" criteria, the ice cream shop is a local community landmark. By preserving the existing structure, a new professional and architectural symbiotic relationship was created, and the following benefits were gained:
- Retention of Building Materials
- 100% of building materials are diverted from disposal in landfills
- Energy Savings
- No energy used for demolition and removal of debris
- Reuse of embodied energy in building materials and assemblies
- Passive reduction of cooling loads for both buildings by reducing the total amount of exterior walls that are subject to the central Florida climate.
- Maximization of Infrastructure
- The property had two existing potable water lines (building & irrigation). Because the new building harvests rainwater for irrigation, the old irrigation line was re-dedicated to provide potable water to the new building.
- A traffic study proved that each business's peak hours of operation were antonymic to the other. The credit union is open until 6:00 pm during the weekdays, and the ice cream shop thrives in the evenings and on weekends. This eliminated the need for additional roadwork for turn-lanes into the property as well as any new parking spaces for the additional business.
- Increased Development Density
- By keeping the existing ice cream shop on the site, it creates an additional +1 local service promoting pedestrian community connectivity.
- Reduces local unemployment by keeping current jobs for existing employees.
- The new Community Room in the credit union includes an ice cream counter that creates a programmatic connection while maintaining rated occupancy separation.
- Retention of Building Materials
- The facility's open floor plan reflects the client's creative approach to providing financial services that promote professional flexibility, operational efficiency and customer satisfaction.
- Organizational effectiveness is increased by:
- Providing "member rooms" that promote team discussions and a large "community room" that accommodates larger scale presentations.
- Cross-training employees in all business areas eliminating specialized positions and offices, thus reducing overall staff size.
- Daylighting directly improves productivity by creating a user-friendly work environment.
- Electronic teller cash recyclers (a recent technological advancement) eliminate the need for a spatial division between the customers and the tellers. They also encourage teller mobility throughout the facility so that staff can meet with customers in a more preferred and comfortable environment while utilizing wireless computing devices.
- On-site renewable energy and rainwater harvesting ensures the reliability of operational resources in the event of a natural disaster or municipal utility failure.
- The building is also equipped with a transfer switch to utilize a portable emergency generator, providing dual-back up for critical building systems.
Multidisciplinary collaboration was key to the success of this project. From the project's inception, the project stakeholders were involved and committed to every design decision collectively agreed upon by the team. It remained of upmost importance that this facility not only meet specified expectations of functionality and sustainability, but also be utilized as a learning tool to both the community members around it as well as the design and construction professionals involved in the daily work.
To ensure compatibility and maximization of all aspects and project components, active collaboration took place at consistent meetings. Owners, civil engineers, structural engineers, electrical engineers, mechanical engineers, architects, construction managers, and materials and systems specialists met on-site every two weeks during construction to review the project's progress and any outstanding issues or questions that may have arisen. These face-to-face meetings promoted an accurate exchange of ideas and facilitated a clarity of understanding that resulted in a quite successful project even though it was quite unique from most of the team members' general commercial building experience.
Project roles and responsibilities were clearly delineated in the beginning of the project. Consistent site visits and communication through various forms of correspondence kept the project on its critical path schedule.
INFORMATION AND TOOLS
Several resources provided the foundation for the sustainable design strategies that were utilized to make this project a success, including:
- The Whole Building Design Guide (WBDG)
- Architecture 2030
- The U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System (NC2.2)
PRODUCTS AND SYSTEMS
Glass, brick, and cement stucco where chosen as exterior finish materials because they are familiar in color, scale and texture to the surrounding context and community. The facade's transparency displays the interior functions of its users during the day. In the evenings when the building is typically unoccupied, colored lights extend the concept of constant activity and vitality embodied in the facility. Character and ornament is created through the project's sustainable features including overhangs and shading devices protecting clerestory and pedestrian level glazing, a south sloping roof of photovoltaic panels that harvests rainwater, and canopies that protect patrons in automobiles as well as those enjoying ice cream in the outdoor plaza. On-site renewable energy and rainwater harvesting ensures the reliability of operational resources in the event of a natural disaster or municipal utility failure. The building is also equipped with a transfer switch to utilize a portable emergency generator, providing dual-back up for critical building systems.
On the interior, Electronic teller cash recyclers (a recent technological advancement) eliminate the need for a spatial division between the customers and the tellers. They also encourage teller mobility throughout the facility so that staff can meet with customers in a more preferred and comfortable environment while utilizing wireless computing devices. For safety and security, biometric fingerprint door lock systems separate non-public spaces.
An open mechanical mezzanine provides ample space for building systems and technologies including communications & IT infrastructure, HVAC equipment, rainwater harvesting (RWH) equipment, and on-site renewable energy equipment and monitors. Locating this equipment on the mezzanine also reduces the impact of noise and radiation to building occupants and creates a more efficient use of the grade level floor area for daily occupant operations. This space also provides configuration flexibility for future technologies. The mezzanine also has a dedicated exterior access point in the event that large equipment needs to be removed or replaced. Organized and integrated design and installation of all building systems enhances future operations, management and serviceability. Integrated high-tech remote HVAC control and security systems are consistent with the owner's other branches and provide safety, convenience and efficient facility management.
Energy Use Description
The new facility has been designed as a carbon-neutral, net zero energy building (ZEB). Increased wall and roof insulation, state-of-the-art insulated glass, large overhangs and sun shades, roofing material with a high solar reflectance, double-roof design for passive cooling, high efficiency HVAC system design and equipment, and automatic digital dimming compact fluorescent lighting reduce the building's energy demand 40% below average requirements of similar commercial structures. The cohesive design also passively reduces energy required for both structures' cooling loads by reducing the total amount of exterior walls that are subject to the central Florida climate; therefore each building will be more efficient than if they were designed to be stand alone structures.
The branch's 58 kW roof-mounted photovoltaic (PV) array is designed to produce 85,717 kWh per year, roughly 16% more than the building's estimated energy requirements, qualifying the branch as both a Source ZEB and Emissions (carbon) ZEB, as defined by the U.S. Department of Energy. According to the DOE's database that only lists seven in the country, this will be the first ZEB in the state of Florida. The "blankets" of PV modules are significantly elevated above the solar reflective roof membrane. This creates a double roof condition that dissipates direct solar heat gain as well as the operating heat of the PV modules through natural convection between the two roof layers.
Annual Energy Use by Fuel
Annual On-site Renewable Generation
Data Sources and Reliability
Based on Simulation:
Based on Utility Bills:
Lakeland Electric, c/o Jeff Curry, Alternative Energy Coordinator
Data is current as of October 5, 2011.
Due to the small scale of the facility, energy use is not sub-metered to identify specific end use consumption. On a semi-annual basis, Straughn Trout Architects requests energy use and generation data directly from the local utility, Lakeland Electric, and creates a report for the building owner to evaluate the building and equipment performance. Since the building's completion, the owner, design team, and systems installers have worked together to continually reduce consumption and improve the performance of the photo-voltaic system towards the ZEB design goal.
Indoor Environment Approach
The branch interior is equally sustainable. Many finishes, including tile, carpet and counter tops, have been selected due to their recycled material content. The lighting system includes digital controls and photo sensors that automatically dim the interior lighting when natural daylight sufficiently illuminates a space, and additional occupancy sensors automatically turn lights off in unoccupied offices. A touchscreen kiosk provides occupants with live building data, a "green features" map, and explanatory animations educating the public about the various sustainable design elements.
A. Lessons Learned
As a tool to measure the success of the project as well as to educate the building users about the sustainable components of the design, a touchscreen kiosk was installed into the community room in the facility. The kiosk displays live building data for water and energy, identifies the green features of the project and provides explanatory animations.
- USGBC LEED Gold, vNC2.2 (November 30, 2009)
- US Environmental Protection Agency, 2011 Energy Star Certified (April 5, 2011)
- Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC) 2010 "Beyond Green" Awards - 2nd Place
- USGBC Florida Gulf Coast Chapter 2010 Building of the Year (small)
- USGBC Central Florida Chapter 2010 Building of the Year (small)
- AIA Tampa Bay Chapter, Committee on the Environment (COTE), 2011 Sustainability Award
- US Environmental Protection Agency, 2011 Energy Star Certified
- 100 Florida Architects & Interior Designers, Edited by Damir Sinovcic, Published by Design Book Press, 2010
- The New York Times / ClimateWire, "As More Commercial Buildings Go Green, a Few Go 'Net-Zero'", by Joey Peters; March 23, 2011
- Maddux Business Report, "Doubly Cool" by Jennifer Lugo, pg. 14; May 2009
- Credit Union Journal, "Building May Be 'Net Zero Energy' But CU Plans For It To Net New Image, Growth", by Matt Blumenfeld, pg. 16; February 2, 2009
- WFLA, "Going Green" Report by Jennifer Leigh, 2 minutes; Original Broadcast: March 20th, 2009
- WTVT, "FOXe Energy Team" Report by Ken Suarez, 2 minutes; Original Broadcast: April 17th, 2009