New software and technology are helping construction companies streamline documentation for LEED certification. The New Building Institute (NBI) recently launched the COMNET Energy Modeling portal that gathers energy modeling data from a number of software packages, conducts quality assurance checks, and sends the information to LEED Online for the energy and atmosphere prerequisite and the energy and atmosphere credit.
While the system filters the results automatically, users can still review the LEED Online template to ensure that it has been filled out appropriately. For now, the new portal is free to use, but charges will be assessed after October.
The U.S. Green Building Council launched the LEED Automation program in 2010 to fast-track the certification process by synchronizing LEED Online with third-party systems, and more options are likely to become available.
For instance, NBI is working with other modeling software vendors that are working to add a COMNET XML output option. For building teams, technology like this will allow architects and contractors to spend more time on design and construction, rather than manually entering data for LEED certification. One design firm estimates the COMNET Energy Modeling portalcan save an entire day’s worth of work from not having to manually fill out forms.
Similar options may become more common on construction projects that seek any type of green certification.