AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY
November 7, 1998 Sustainable Buildings
Prepared by Joyce Lee, AIA
Attendees: Joyce Lee - NYC OMB, AIA COTE; Hugh Dunbar - AIA COTE, McKissack & McKissack; John Amatruda - Steven Winter Associates; Alfred Ng Parsons Brinckerhoff; David Anstrand - Manheim Township School District; Mary Dietz - URS Griener, (Not present : Bill Bobenhausen - Steven Winter Associates, suggested co-chair; John Rountree - John Rountree Architects)
1.What are the most important issues facing the implementation of sustainable schools in urban areas?
> The importance of demonstrating successful cases and projects, i.e.geothermal school as an environmental technology in PA and the use of computer technology such as DOE 2 or Radiance
> Qualifying and quantifying benefits and in particular, the bundling of benefits in whole system implementation from site planning to the building envelope to systems to lighting to renewable energy to waste and water management to material selection
> Association of better environment leading to student's performance (i.e.better indoor air quality to less lethargy to better reading/math/science scores) and the pitfalls of current deficit
> The avoidance of marketing sustainable building as NEW technologies. Cross-ventilation, heat pumps and day-lighting are more design strategies than advanced technologies per se.
> Need for research information to be provided to designers and operators of schools
> Need for bringing the tangible natural environment (i.e. greenhouse and gardens) and an understanding of natural resources to an urban school setting
2. What are the barriers ?
> Apprehension from people (i.e. clients and design professionals) not familiar with sustainable applications
> Site constraints
> Lack of measurable benefits that are easily available
> Lack of training and education
3. What can be an action plan ?
> Make sustainability a required design element in scope development and incorporate this requirement in all Requests for Proposals RFPs (US Navy is already doing this)
> Use demonstration projects and document process and results
> Integrate sustainable buildings in educational curriculum to enhance the understanding of energy, recycling and waste, water and architecture
> Outreach to stakeholders about the direct educational and social benefits of a healthy environment, particularly within urban schools where environmental quality is often poor
> Use a design charrette at the outset of a project to bring all stakeholders together in order to set performance goals.