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Green Building Demonstration Project Adam Saling City of San Diego Green Building Demonstration Project Built in 1981, bought by the City of San Diego in 1994 after two years of vacancy Wood and stucco construction with “marblecrete” exterior

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Green Building Demonstration Project

Adam Saling

City of San Diego


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Green Building Demonstration Project

  • Built in 1981, bought by the City of San Diego in 1994 after two years of vacancy

  • Wood and stucco construction with “marblecrete” exterior

  • Offices for Environmental Services Department and Field Inspection Division

  • 3 floors with 2 wings totaling 73,000 sq. ft.


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Green Building Demonstration ProjectOriginal HVAC and Lighting Equipment

  • 70 water source heat pumps (EERs of 10-11)

    • Cold water from cooling tower is cooling source

    • Hot water from gas boiler is heat source

    • Used R-22 as refrigerant in compressor

  • Package units used to condition lobby

  • 2 roof top cooling towers with 15 hp fan motors to release heat

  • No centralized controls

  • Conventional T-12 lamps, magnetic ballasts


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Needing code related upgrades and repair of mechanical and electrical systems

Office layout needed to be modified

Inefficient, old, poorly maintained system

High energy consumption costs

Total electric energy consumption $.096/kWh, $1.98/sq.ft., or 20.6 kWh per sq.ft., corresponding to $145,700 annually

Green Building Demonstration ProjectProject Scenario


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsProject Challenges

  • Goal of four year simple payback in terms of energy savings

  • High levels of energy & environmental performance called for within ESD’s strict financial budget

  • Overall stringent objective to reach less than 9 kWh per sq.ft. annually for electricity use

  • This “green building” will be a model for sustainable building practices in San Diego


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsOther Project Challenges

  • Persuading decision makers to approve

  • Modeling (DOE-2) and integrating incremental energy efficiency measures

  • Procurement of upgraded equipment

    • Low bid vs. Sole-source purchases

  • Dealing with low-bid contractors regarding alternate “equal” products, per contract provisions


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsSystem Solution

  • New, more efficient cooling towers

  • More efficient water source heat pumps

  • Lobby package units replaced with water source heat pumps

  • Occupancy sensors installed

  • Direct digital controls installed

    • Building Automation System

    • Automatic Temperature Control

  • Lighting improvements coincident with project


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsWater Source Heat Pump Replacement

  • New EERs of 14.5-15.2 (versus 10-11)

  • New heat pumps consume 17,250 kWh/month, versus 28,750 KWh/month of old heat pumps, saving 138,000 KWh per year

  • Total savings of 40% or $15,180 per year

  • Refrigerant R-22 still used in compressor


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsOther HVAC System Changes

  • Cooling towers replaced

    • With open type, slightly oversized fiberglass towers with 5hp fans

    • Produce 75% energy savings

  • Variable speed drives installed on all pump motors

  • Isolation valves on all heat pumps

  • Reduced supply air & outside air

    • Improved air filtration with 85% bag filters


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsLighting Improvements

  • Full task/ambient lighting improvements

    • Full lighting controls with dimmable electronic ballasts, T-8 lamps, photocells, and occupancy sensors

      • Provided lighting power of .73 W/sq.ft. (compared with California Title 24 allowable 1.5 W/sq.ft)

    • Light levels maintained

      • Work station lighting supplemented with low-power task lights with occupancy sensor

  • Total energy savings

    • 53% energy savings from original lighting


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systems Other Building Load Reductions

  • Occupancy sensors

    • Installed for lighting & interlocked with heat pumps to shut down heat pumps in unoccupied zones

    • Installed for computer monitors with time usage sensors

  • High performance spectrally selective window films installed

    • Block heat, let light in


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Green Demonstration Building Project electrical systemsResulting Electricity Use, 1996-97

  • Used 8.0 kWh/sq.ft, meeting 9kWh/sq.ft. goal!


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsResulting Gas Use, 1996-97

  • Used 3000 therms per year, for $2421


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsIntegrated Energy Savings


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Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsFinancing Structure

  • Capital Improvement Program within the Environmental Services Enterprise Fund

  • SDG&E provided services and financial support

    • Environmental efficiency measures, outside professional fees, and financial incentives totaled over $300,000

    • Provided displays and educational material on energy efficiency in the building

  • EPRI provided matching funds for energy consultation fees of about $75,000

  • $130,000 savings from manufacturers participating in the Partnership Program


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    Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsProject Timeline

    • Less than 2 years to completion


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    Green Building Demonstration Project electrical systemsProject Results

    • Energy efficiency measures cost ~ $270,000

    • Utility savings of ~ $70,000 annually

    • Overall payback of 3.8 years

    • Demonstration facility for other SD area projects

    • Projected increase in worker productivity

    • Award winning environmental design (AIA in SD)

    • Educational benefits, including training facility, environmental displays, project video & building monitoring


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