Ithaca/Tompkins County

Commercial Energy Now III

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2 HOLT Architects' New Office - Renovating to Net-Zero HOLT Architects recently renovated a dated, 7,500sf commercial property into their new high-performance, collaborative, and net-zero office. Net-zero means that the total amount of energy used by the building is equal to the amount of renewable energy that is created on-site. Two critical components in achieving net-zero energy are onsite energy production and energy consumption minimization, and at HOLT's 619 West State Street space these include: PHOTOVOLTAIC ARRAYS: HOLT's PV array is a grid-tied electrical production system. Grid-tied means that when the office is producing more energy than it is consuming, the excess electricity is being put into the utility grid rather than being stored in batteries. When the sun is not shining, the office will pull energy off the grid. HIGH-PERFORMANCE ENVELOPE: A high-performance envelope is imperative to keeping heat/cool air from leaving the building, and is one of the most important factors in high-performance design. e build- ing's existing envelope consisted of uninsulated CMU block walls; and HOLT's unique envelope renovation solution of putting continuous insulation on the inside of the block and in the stud cavity helps keep all of the energy inside. NATURAL LIGHTING: Skylights greatly minimize energy use by harvesting natural light deep into the build- ing. While the majority of employees in the studio have direct access to outside light, the private offices and collaborative zones achieve it through skylights and clerestory windows. ARTIFICIAL LIGHTING: Using LED lighting is a great way to reduce energy consumption -- and lighting controls such as occupancy sensors, daylight sensors, and scheduling soware, assure that energy is invested in lighting only when and where it is necessary. In private offices the lights automatically turn on at 70%, leav- ing it up to the user to adjust the control if more light is needed. PLUG LOADS: Plug load control hardware allows control of power receptacles by occupancy or time of day. In the HOLT studio, the plugs shut off at 7pm so that all monitors and chargers power down for the night (un- less overridden for late night work)! by HOLT Architects

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