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Saving on Natatorium Energy Costs with Green Options

Photos courtesy Jarmel Kizel Architects and Engineers

New technologies can provide optimal natatorium environmental control and energy savings. Today’s indoor pool dehumidifiers and outside air ventilation systems technology has changed so much over the last decade, a new or retrofitted natatorium stands to save millions of dollars in energy costs over the 15 to 25-year lifecycle of the equipment. Equipment comes with reduced refrigerant charges of up to 85-percent, compressor heat recovery for free pool water heating, exhaust heat recovery for preheating outdoor air, modulating controls for pinpoint temperature and humidity control, glycol heat rejection to dry coolers, and web-based microprocessor monitor, alarms, and control for factory technician review.

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Seeing the Urban Forests for the Trees: Secondary benefits of our cities’ wood

Photo courtesy M Magazine

In the wake of the devastation caused by the emerald ash borer, urban lumber harvesting has emerged as a response in the United States and Canada. Instead of grinding the wood into mulch, the urban wood movement promotes using urban forests to provide distinctive finishes for built spaces while also connecting those spaces to a piece of history. Designers, contractors, specifiers, and related professionals wishing to use urban wood must be aware of special considerations if they wish to take advantage of this unique resource.

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Energy Efficiency and Building with Wood: Six Building Lifecycle Steps

Buildings have an impact on people and the environment throughout their entire lifecycle, starting with extracting resources from the earth to putting them back in the earth, or burning them, at the end of their lives. To evaluate the effect of buildings in this regard, everything from the energy they consume, the waste they generate, and the carbon dioxide (CO₂) they emit must be considered throughout six major cycles.

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Energy Efficiency and Building with Wood

Photo © Norman A. Müller

The combination of wood and energy efficiency in construction can be the result of new wood technologies. Introducing new sustainable forestry management policies and manufacturing with engineered lumber products will lead to alternative building practices using glued-laminated (glulam) and cross-laminated timber (CLT), computer-aided manufacturing, and optimal value-engineered framing. The lifecycle of a building, energy measurement, and Passive House design elements are discussed.

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10 Key Questions about Exterior Shading

Photo © Richard Wilson. Photo courtesy Draper Inc.

Over the last decade, exterior shading has become more popular in the United States. However, many architects and building owners still have limited knowledge about these systems and why they should be considered part of the building design. This article explores 10 frequently asked questions about exterior shading, while providing insight into available systems and how they can be an important part of the building’s environmental control.

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Don’t Seal Your Fate: Considerations for parking garage surface treatments

All photos © Hoffmann Architects Inc.

Parking decks must be protected from the harmful effects of moisture and chlorides, but there is a growing preconception installing a traffic-bearing membrane is a one-way ticket to the garage equivalent of immortality. While a traffic-bearing membrane may work in many situations, consideration is necessary to determine if this costly investment is the correct solution for the garage’s needs. Identifying product properties and applying appropriate selection criteria can help specifiers develop solutions that protect now, while considering treatment options for the future.

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