ASHRAE design contest winners demonstrate building resilience

Model building, a city hall, could operate without utility service for two week.

October 24, 2019 |

Courtesy Pixabay

Winners of ASHRAE’s 2019 LowDown Showdown modeling competition demonstrated both near energy net-zero attributes along with impressive resilience qualities.

The model building chosen was a 90,000 sf city hall (new construction) located in San Diego. This facility was designed to be a multi-functional building, housing many of the cities vital public services including an Emergency Operations Center during a disaster or crisis.

The facility could maintain operations for 14 days during a utility outage. It would support coordination of emergency responses while maintaining critical functions like prisoner life safety and security. The building can transition to a setback mode, minimizing energy consumption by relaxing thermal comfort targets. Building systems would draw energy from a 10,000 kWh battery system and a 427 KW PV array for power, and 10 kgal potable and 20 kgal non-potable water storage tanks.

The second-place team designed a new city hall with a three-story atrium to provide ample space for green walls, skylight, and natural breezes. The project included deployment of EnergyBox, an in-house web platform that speeds up design exploration by automating processes and encouraging collaboration by effective visualization.

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