Energy Modeling, like sketching, should be used throughout the design process to inform and shape the design. Just like a sketch can allow you to explore some detail without knowing all the other details, an energy model can let you see the impacts of different design choices. This allows promising ideas with strong potential energy savings to be incorporated early, but just as importantly, it allows ideas that have less savings potential to be considered, and abandoned early, letting the team focus on the ideas that will have the greatest cumulative savings, an attractive return on investment, or whatever other goal they are pursuing for the project. The true value of this approach is—when used early during design—we are able to find the optimal combination of strategies in real-time, during design meetings.
We’re seeing a growing trend in cities throughout the nation: mandating energy benchmarking as a way to achieve aggressive energy and carbon emissions reduction. We applaud the use of energy benchmarking as a way to prioritize buildings that have the most potential for improvement – in fact, we’ve been benchmarking buildings since 2004. In our experience, however, we have seen returns superior to those published in a report recently issued by the New York City Mayor's Office of Sustainability.
Sustainable design places quite a bit of focus on new buildings, but what about existing ones? Limited resources—both people and money—and deferred maintenance continue to affect the safe and reliable operation of current buildings. Finding a way to identify which buildings are inefficient has traditionally been difficult without costly and time-consuming auditing... until now.
Trinity’s commitment to opening up the STEM fields is clear. The Center and its design say the sciences are exciting; they are fresh.
Renovations are underway at the Steidle Building to improve energy efficiency.