Solar Power...things to consider!

When you're ready to invest in solar, keep all of these steps in mind to design the best roof possible

Energy use and production is one of the largest sources of carbon emissions in the US, as well as one of the costliest expenses for businesses and households. To improve efficiency of resources, many building owners have developed an interest in solar photovoltaic (PV) panels. Rooftop solar installations can provide long-term economic and environmental benefits for building owners, and future tax breaks, technological advances in solar panels, and caps on carbon production may further increase the return on investment (ROI) for renewable energy sources.

At the same time, certain variables make it difficult to generalize on immediate returns. The viability of systems varies greatly, depending on the cost of electricity at the installation site, as does the price that state utility regulators set for the re-purchase of excess renewable power generated by the installation. The cost of installation itself can also vary, depending on the capacity of the roof to support panels.

Due to this uncertainty about the present-day economics behind panels, clients may be more interested in reserving space for a later installation. Whichever they prefer, here are eight factors to consider when designing a solar-ready roof.

Read the entire article by clicking the following link:

http://new.aia.org/articles/15451-eight-factors-to-consider-when-designing-solar-ready-roofs?utm_source=Real%20Magnet&utm_medium=Email&utm_content=2417223171&utm_campaign=101328075

 

Designing for Health

Meeting the WELL Building Standard means fully incorporating health into the design process

When it comes to using design to improve public health, Little Diversified Architectural Consulting and Boeman Design couldn’t be more similar.

Little, a mid-sized architectural firm, and Boeman Design, a husband-wife team in Chicago, are both using healthy building design as a market differentiator. Both have clients interested in healthy building design as a way to increase employee productivity, recruitment, and retention. And both work on projects that feature new design techniques as catalysts for improving the health of people all over the world.

So it was natural for the two organizations to pursue WELL Certification on their projects. “We got in on the ground floor of the healthy building movement because we strongly believe that designing for human sustainability provides a more holistic approach to architecture,” says Carol Rickard-Brideau, AIA, partner and workplace global practice leader at Little. Rickard-Brideau started doing research into how architecture intersected with the field of human neurobiology more than a decade ago.

At a conference where she was giving a presentation, someone told her of a new standard focused exclusively on the health and well-being of people in the built environment—the WELL Building Standard™, which was pioneered by Delos. Today, WELL is administered by the International WELL Building Institute™ (IWBI) and third-party certified by GBCI. She soon met with Paul Scialla, founder and CEO of Delos, and was part of the first cohort of architects that participated in the WELL Building Standard training at the Cleveland Clinic. “It was a lucky happenstance,” she says.

To read the full article, click on the following link:

http://new.aia.org/articles/13351-taking-healthy-design-from-movement-to-reality?utm_source=Real%20Magnet&utm_medium=Email&utm_content=2417223171&utm_campaign=98530078

You know your streets are crowded when...

Here is a clever (and probably very expensive) solution to traffic congestion as envisioned in China.

A model of a Transit Elevated Bus (TEB) debuted at the ongoing 19th China Beijing International High-Tech Expo. TEB is a purely homegrown invention of China. Its passenger compartment rises far above other vehicles on the road, allowing cars to pass underneath, which will largely increase the utilization of road space.

Davenport Public Works - Under Construction

P+C Architects would like to share one of our new projects that is now under construction in the city of Davenport, FL.  The project is for their new Public Works Facility and it is scheduled to be completed by Fall of this year (2016).

The photograph below shows the project in an early construction phase with most of the structural steel framing in place.

This rendering shows what the finished product will look like when construction is complete.

Public Fitness

While enjoying the Community Playground in Winter Park, FL the other day with my family, I came across something that I thought was really interesting and it speaks to a community's commitment to providing opportunities for all citizens to live a healthier lifestyle.  What the city has provided is an area along a walking/jogging path to perform various exercises similar to what you would find in a gym.

I am sure that we have all seen these before in our own communities, but I have never seen them installed with such quality and with as many options.  As you can see in the photos (which are not of Community Playground.  The ones I took were not as good as what I found on the internet), all the exercise machines are made with high grade steel and don't require much maintenance.  Also, they do not have the added complication of weights that need to be adjusted.  It is all resistance training (some of the machines have the option to adjust resistance).

Interesting Green Building Material

Structural Insulated Panels or SIPs have actually been around for quite a long time, but don't get heavy use compared to concrete block here in Florida.  Probably one of the reasons is due to the use of OSB and plywood as the interior and exterior panels.  Even though SIPs provide a much higher insulation value, or "R" value, than block or even insulated stud walls, no one likes materials that rot.

Recently, I have found newer versions of SIPs that are now using materials that do not rot, burn or promote the growth of mold.  The material that I am talking about here is Magnesium Oxide Board or MGO.  In the construction world the panel is known as MGO SIP. 

In addition to high "R" values, SIPs have great structural integrity and most manufacturers make panels that meet Miami/Dade Code requirements.

For more information on SIPs and the history of this building product go to this link:

http://innovaecobuildingsystem.com/about-us-2/history-of-sips-panels/