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Institute Bids Farewell to a Pioneering Industry Council

News & Press - September 27, 2017 - 2:33pm

This past week, the National Institute of Building Sciences Board of Directors voted to sunset the Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC).

Founded in 1980 as the Passive Solar Industries Council, the independent, non-profit organization that later became the SBIC was a pioneer advocate of the whole building approach to sustainable facilities. The founding members, consisting of major building trade groups, large corporations, small businesses and individual practitioners, understood that energy and resource-efficient design and construction are imperative to a sustainable built environment. The SBIC and its members viewed energy use and sustainability within a larger context of benefits related to productivity and overall efficiency, health and safety, serviceability and other performance factors.

The SBIC participated in a number of cutting-edge efforts, including founding of the WBDG Whole Building Design Guide®. In 1997, the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Engineering Innovation and Criteria Office was looking for ways to leverage their shrinking technical and financial resources to update hundreds of paper-based criteria documents relating to construction. SBIC members and staff helped conceptualize the WBDG website, hosted by the National Institute of Building Sciences, to help address this growing problem.

SBIC also served as the exclusive distributor of Energy-10™. For many years, Energy-10™ was the leading energy-modeling tool for small commercial buildings. Developed primarily by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the tool provided improved integration with window data from the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) and included the ability to model some additional heating/ventilation/air conditioning (HVAC) system types. The SBIC provided training and technical support, as well as distribution.

Over the decades, the SBIC published several notable guides. The High Performance School Buildings Resource and Strategy Guide explained how to achieve schools that provide better learning environments for students and teachers, cost less to operate and help protect the environment. The Beyond Green™: Guidelines for High-Performance Homes—Meeting the Demand for Low-Energy, Resource-Efficient Homes described the important aspects needed to make a home green. The SBIC also developed Procurement of Architectural and Engineering Services for Sustainable Buildings – A Guide for Federal Project Managers, produced under contract to the Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP).

In addition, the SBIC hosted online courses and workshops on green building and high-performance schools. For five years at the turn of the millennium, SBIC conducted a series of two-day workshops for FEMP and NAVFAC that looked at design strategies for low-energy, sustainable and secure buildings.

To recognize the progress the industry was making, the SBIC began an awards program. First called the Best Practice Sustainability Awards, the awards program is now known as the Beyond Green™ High-Performance Building and Community Awards.

SBIC’s ideas continued to be reflected in the WBDG and in federal legislation mandating high-performance buildings, as well as the National Institute of Building Sciences High Performance Building Council (HPBC) agenda.

In late 2011, the original SBIC ceased operations. The Institute’s Board of Directors formed a new SBIC in May 2012 to carry on the mission. For the next five years, the SBIC continued its work to unite and inspire the building industry toward higher performance through education, outreach, advocacy and the mutual exchange of ideas.

In early 2017, the Institute announced that the Board had sunset the HPBC because its mission had permeated into the Institute’s other councils and committees. Similarly, the initial resource-related goals espoused by the SBIC have become widely recognized within the industry through programs such as the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program, the Green Globes certification and the increasing growth in Passive House design and zero-energy buildings. Further, the Institute’s other councils and the WBDG website continue to bring the Beyond Green™ concepts to the broader building industry.

The Institute thanks the members of the SBIC for their role in achieving these significant accomplishments over the past 37 years.

Highlighting the ongoing importance of taking a whole building approach to problem solving, the Institute will continue to host the annual Beyond Green™ High-Performance Building and Community Awards to support the industry in developing solutions to achieve sustainable, high-performance buildings. This unique program recognizes the initiatives that shape, inform and catalyze the high-performance building market, as well as the real-world application of high-performance design and construction practices. Learn more about the Beyond Green™ AwardsNominate a Beyond Green™ project.

Two Weeks Until Webinar Looks at Risk, Rewards of Energy in Commercial Appraisals

News & Press - September 15, 2017 - 11:46am

There is still time to learn about an effort by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to put energy performance on the lending table. The National Institute of Building Sciences Council on Finance, Insurance and Real Estate (CFIRE) will host a webinar to discuss the energy performance of buildings. “Energy in Commercial Appraisals and Mortgages: Risk or Reward?” is scheduled for 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET, Thursday, September 28, 2017.

In current mortgage and appraisal practices, lenders generally do not consider energy use a motivating factor and do not fully account the risks and opportunities associated with energy use of buildings during valuation. Following a scoping study and stakeholder engagements with lenders and building owners, DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and the University of California-Berkeley Haas School of Business have identified several potential interventions to properly account for energy factors in the lending process.

During the hour-long webinar, moderator Ryan M. Colker of the National Institute of Building Sciences and presenters Paul Mathew, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab; Nancy Wallace, University of California-Berkeley; and Andrew White, JDM Associates will discuss an upcoming training course for commercial appraisers and efforts to engage the lending community on appraisals for high-performing buildings.

REGISTER TO ATTEND
Sign up now to attend the free webinar, “Energy in Commercial Appraisals and Mortgages: Risk or Reward?” on September 28. Space is limited, so don’t wait. Register today!

Webinar Looks at Capturing Energy Performance in Commercial Building Mortgages

News & Press - August 23, 2017 - 11:03am

When it comes to the buying and selling of commercial real estate—a multi-step process that involves high stakes and numerous stakeholders—the energy performance of buildings is not usually top of mind. An upcoming webinar by the National Institute of Building Sciences Council on Finance, Insurance and Real Estate (CFIRE) could bring the topic into higher focus. The webinar, Energy in Commercial Appraisals and Mortgages: Risk or Reward?, scheduled for 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET, Thursday, September 28, 2017, will highlight an effort by the U.S. Department of Energy to put energy performance on the lending table.

In current mortgage and appraisal practices, lenders generally do not consider energy use a motivating factor and do not fully account the risks and opportunities associated with energy use of buildings during valuation. Following a scoping study and stakeholder engagements with lenders and building owners, DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and the University of California-Berkeley Haas School of Business have identified several potential interventions to properly account for energy factors in the lending process.

During the hour-long webinar, moderator Ryan M. Colker of the National Institute of Building Sciences and presenters Paul Mathew, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab; Nancy Wallace, University of California-Berkeley; and Andrew White, JDM Associates, will discuss an upcoming training course for commercial appraisers and efforts to engage the lending community on appraisals for high-performing buildings.

REGISTER TO ATTEND
Sign up now to attend the free webinar, “Energy in Commercial Appraisals and Mortgages: Risk or Reward?” on September 28. Space is limited, so don’t wait. Register today!

Institute to Host Representative Hearing on Healthcare Facility Person-Centered Care

News & Press - August 22, 2017 - 12:04pm

Requesting Testimony from Healthcare, Building Industry Representatives

The nation’s healthcare environment is changing and facilities need to keep pace—particularly with the growth in a senior population in need of care. The design, construction and operation of healthcare facilities must respond to these needs and provide the environment necessary for effective delivery of quality, person-centered care. In recognition of the impact that the varying requirements on design, construction and operations of these facilities have on all aspects of the building industry, the National Institute of Building Sciences, through its Academy for Healthcare Infrastructure (AHI), will conduct a representative hearing August 31, 2017, from 9:00 am – 12:00 noon, ET, in Washington, D.C., to address the impact of facility-based requirements on the delivery of person-centered care.

According to the Mayer-Rothschild Foundation, which is sponsoring the hearing, person-centered care is “anchored in values and beliefs that return the locus of control to elders and those who work closest with them to support their quality of life. It is delivered in a built environment that is designed to be supportive, healing and non-institutional.” Facilities should help facilitate provision of care, not detract from the ability to provide quality, cost-effective healthcare. However, differing requirements on the design, construction and operations of facilities distract from the ability of the facility to provide care and place undue monetary expense on providers—money that could be better applied towards the provision of patient services. As healthcare costs continue to rise, the facility should not be placing undue burden on providers.

The Representative Hearing on Facility-Based Requirements on the Delivery of Person-Centered Care will provide an opportunity for representatives from the planning, design, construction, operations, ownership, finance, insurance, regulatory and other segments of the U.S. building industry; healthcare providers; and consumers to speak about the challenges they face and offer potential solutions. The Institute is particularly interested in receiving testimony from organizations that have moved beyond traditional approaches to address concerns related to providing person-centered care. Case studies, best practices and data on the benefits of such approaches are encouraged.

The hearing will be open to anyone interested in attending. Both written and oral testimony will be accepted from any interested parties. Following the hearing, the Institute will publish a report featuring findings and recommendations, along with practical guidance that industry participants can apply to help advance the delivery of person-centered care.

The Institute strives to be a respected source of unbiased information for the building community. Given its Congressional mandate to serve as an authoritative national source to make findings and advise both the public and private sectors of the economy with respect to the use of building science and technology, the Institute is the ideal organization to lead a national conversation on these challenges before the building and healthcare industries.

View the guidelines and procedures for submitting testimony. Requests to provide oral testimony are due August 28. The record for written testimony closes September 15, 2017, at 5:00 pm ET.

Plan to attend? The August 31 Representative Hearing on Facility-Based Requirements on the Delivery of Person-Centered Care will be held at the National Institute of Building Sciences, located at 1090 Vermont Ave. NW, Suite 700, Washington, DC 20005. Please notify the Institute if you plan to attend.

To call in: Interested parties may call in: 866-628-8620 – passcode: 494845#. Please note, call-in parties will not be able to provide testimony.

Still have questions? Contact the AHI Program Director.

Upcoming NCS Webinar Will Look at BIM Implementation

News & Press - July 31, 2017 - 3:03pm

While many design professionals in the U.S. building industry use building information modeling tools, many people still require and rely upon computer-aided design (CAD)-based, two-dimensional drawings for project information delivery. In 2014, the developers of the United States National CAD Standard® (NCS)—The American Institute of Architects (AIA), Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) and National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS)—released NCS Version 6 (V6), which includes a new section on implementing BIM. A new webinar, “BIM Implementation,” to be held Thursday, August 17, 2017, from 2:00 – 3:00 pm ET, will highlight this new content.

The NIBS buildingSMART alliance®, which oversees the NCS standards development process through its NCS Steering Committee, also develops the National Building Information Modeling Standard-United States® (NBIMS-US™). Since the NBIMS-US™ does not define graphical standards, the NCS Steering Committee added a new BIM Implementation Section in the NCS V6 to clarify the applicability of NCS content as well as provide new basic BIM guidelines.

Presenter Johnny Fortune will help attendees gain an understanding of why the Steering Committee added BIM information to the NCS V6; identify what NCS content is applicable to implementing BIM; clarify what BIM guidelines are typical; and explain how to implement the NCS V6 BIM content.

The immediate past chair of the buildingSMART alliance, Fortune is actively involved in both NCS and NBIMS-US™ standards development, as well as committees for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers/Industry BIM/CIM Consortium. He serves as BIM Director at Bullock Tice Associates in Pensacola, Florida, where he has led the complete transition from CAD to BIM production; directs the company’s overall BIM strategies, standards and technology operations; and oversees BIM integration with external stakeholders. He has presented about CAD/BIM workflow integration at several venues, including: Autodesk University, BIMForum, GeoBuiz, the NIBS Annual Conference, CSI chapter meetings and various Society of American Military Engineers events.

The NCS developers host webinars to give attendees the opportunity to learn more about the benefits of acquiring and implementing Version 6 with its added features, such as the new BIM module. The NCS streamlines and simplifies the exchange of building design and construction data from project development throughout the life of a facility. It coordinates the efforts of the entire architecture, engineering and construction (A/E/C) industry by classifying electronic building design data consistently, allowing streamlined communication among owners and design and construction project teams. Use of the NCS can reduce costs and produce greater efficiency in the design and construction process.

The webinar will include a question and answer segment. Attendees can submit their specific questions upon registering for the event. They do not need to own the NCS to attend.

Upon completion of the course, attendees will get a code for a 10% discount to purchase the NCS. Architects are eligible to earn one learning unit (LU) continuing education unit from the AIA. AIA members must submit their AIA registration number on the webinar form.

To sign up for the webinar, “BIM Implementation,” to be held August 17, 2017, from 2:00 – 3:00 pm ET, register now.

Learn more about the NCS.

August 25 BSSC Webinar Will Look at Seismic Design of Masonry

News & Press - July 24, 2017 - 6:26pm

The National Institute of Building Sciences Building Seismic Safety Council (BSSC) will host the sixth webinar in its 2017 series sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The free webinar, “Seismic Design of Masonry with the 2015 NEHRP Provisions,” will be held Friday, August 25, 2017, from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm ET (11:00 am to 12:00 pm PT).

The BSSC webinar series highlights the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) 2015 NEHRP Recommended Seismic Provisions for Buildings and Other Structures, as well as its supporting materials, FEMA P-1051 Design Examples and FEMA P-1052 Training Materials.

Presenter David Sommer, PE, SE, is the principal author of the masonry chapter of FEMA P-1051. He will discuss seismic design of masonry using the 2015 NEHRP Recommended Seismic Provisions and the referenced 2013 edition of The Masonry Society (TMS) standard TMS 402/602: Building Code Requirements and Specification for Masonry Structures. He will present masonry behavior, material properties and navigation of the design standards, as well as design of walls for in-plane and out-of-plane seismic forces using the strength design provisions of TMS 402. Sommer will conclude the webinar with an excerpt from FEMA P-1051 to illustrate some of the highlighted concepts.

Sommer is a licensed structural engineer with Degenkolb Engineers in Seattle, Washington. He is an active member of TMS, which produces TMS-402, the new-design standard for masonry structures. He serves on the Masonry Issues Team of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) committee ASCE 41-17 on Seismic Evaluation and Retrofit of Existing Buildings, where he led a case study on the reinforced masonry provisions. Sommer holds a master’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a bachelor of science in civil engineering from Seattle University.

EARN AND LEARN
Attendees who are engineers are eligible to earn one Professional Development Hour (PDH) for the webinar, code officials are eligible to earn 0.1 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and architects are eligible to earn one health/safety/welfare (HSW) CEU. People are encouraged to watch the webinar together as a group or a firm, but all viewers must sign up individually to receive learning unit verifications.

REGISTER TO ATTEND
Sign up now to attend the free “Seismic Design of Masonry with the 2015 NEHRP Provisions” webinar on August 25. Space is limited, so don’t wait. Register today!

Want to see what other topics BSSC has arranged for the 2017 webinar series?

View the schedule.

Don’t Miss the Chance to Present at BEST5, Deadline August 1

News & Press - July 24, 2017 - 11:10am

Abstracts for the April 2018 Conference Are Due August 1

The National Institute of Building Sciences Building Enclosure Technology and Environment Council (BETEC) and the Building Enclosure Council – Philadelphia invite you to submit abstracts for papers by August 1, for presentation at the fifth BEST Conference Building Enclosure Science and Technology™ (BEST5), to be held April 16 – 18, 2018, at the historic Loews Hotel in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The BEST5 technical program will feature both technical conference papers and “presentation only” submissions. The “presentation only” sessions do require an abstract to be submitted and professionally reviewed. From the submissions received, the BEST5 Technical Committee will select approximately 60 abstracts related to building science research, design or practice for conference papers and presentations, panel presentations and poster presentations.

During the three-day Conference, researchers and practitioners will share knowledge and lessons learned concerning the science and art of the building enclosure. BEST5 will consist of concurrent technical sessions, plenary addresses, a BECx workshop and special programs highlighting Philadelphia’s building technology heritage. The Conference also will feature an exhibit hall with opportunities for one-on-one discussions with industry vendors of state-of-the-art building industry products and services.

Submit an abstract.

Questions? Please contact Stephanie Stubbs, Program Director, sstubbs@nibs.org

Next BSSC Webinar Will Look at New Ground Motion Requirements of ASCE 7-16

News & Press - July 13, 2017 - 9:41am

The National Institute of Building Sciences Building Seismic Safety Council (BSSC) will host a special webinar to address the newest ground motion requirements of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)/Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) standard, ASCE 7-16: Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures. Sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the free webinar, “New Site-Specific Ground Motion Requirements of ASCE 7-16,” is scheduled for Friday, July 28, 2017, from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm ET (11:00 am to 12:00 pm PT).

The presenter, Dr. Charles A. Kircher, is a member of the BSSC Provisions Update Committee (PUC) and BSSC Project 17 Committee, as well as the ASCE 7 Seismic Subcommittee. He will talk about how the new site-specific design requirements were developed to address an identified shortcoming in the method for buildings on softer sites.

Previously, the equivalent lateral force (ELF) and modal response spectrum analysis (MRSA) seismic design procedures related to the use of only two response periods, Time period (T) = 0.2 seconds (s) and T = 1.0 s, to define seismic design forces in the domains of constant acceleration and constant velocity, respectively. Although approximate, the domains of constant acceleration and velocity provide a reasonably accurate and conservative representation for response at stiffer sites governed by smaller magnitude earthquakes, but are generally inaccurate and un-conservative at softer sites (e.g., Site Classes D and E), in particular, sites for which the seismic hazard is dominated by large magnitude earthquakes. Exceptions to the new site-specific design requirements permit ELF and MRSA design using values of seismic design parameters increased by as much as 50 percent to avoid potential underestimation of design earthquake ground motions.

Dr. Kircher is a registered professional engineer with more than 35 years of experience in earthquake engineering, focusing on vulnerability assessment, risk analysis and innovative design solutions, as well as seismic code development. As Principal of Kircher & Associates, he provides consulting services to a variety of clients that includes commercial and industrial businesses; military and government organizations; and other engineering companies. He holds B.S., M.S., Engineer and Ph.D. degrees from Stanford University. In addition to his work on PUC, Project 17 and ASCE 7, Dr. Kircher is a Fellow of the Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC), an Honorary Member of the Structural Engineers Association of Northern California (SEAONC) and long-standing participant in SEAONC activities. He has served on the SEAONC Board of Directors, chaired the Seismology Committee and Base Isolation Subcommittee, served on the Seismology Ground Motion Subcommittee and coauthored the 1990 Blue Book, Tentative General Requirements for the Design and Construction of Seismic-Isolated Structures, Appendix 1L.

EARN AND LEARN
Attendees who are engineers are eligible to earn one Professional Development Hour (PDH) for the webinar, code officials are eligible to earn 0.1 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and architects are eligible to earn one health/safety/welfare (HSW) CEU. People are encouraged to watch the webinar together as a group or a firm, but all viewers must sign up individually to receive learning unit verifications.

REGISTER TO ATTEND
Sign up now to attend the free “New Site-Specific Ground Motion Requirements of ASCE 7-16” webinar on July 28. Space is limited, so don’t wait. Register today!

Want to see what other topics BSSC has arranged for the 2017 webinar series?

View the schedule.

Spotlight a Cutting-Edge Project that Goes Beyond Green™

News & Press - July 11, 2017 - 4:32pm

Across the United States, designers, builders, owners, government agencies, manufacturers and others are going beyond the status quo to achieve high-performing, resilient buildings and communities. Now is the time to show off advancements and gain recognition for those buildings, initiatives and innovations that are influencing, informing and inspiring the high-performance planning, design, construction and operations processes. Enter those cutting-edge projects and activities for a chance to win a National Institute of Building Sciences 2017 Beyond Green™ High-Performance Building and Community Award.

The Beyond Green™ Awards distinguish those projects and activities that best demonstrate the eight high-performance attributes: sustainability, accessibility, aesthetics, cost effectiveness, functionality, productivity, historical sensitivity, and safety and security (resilience). The nomination categories include: High-Performance Buildings; High-Performance Attributes and Systems; High-Performance Initiatives; and Innovations for High-Performance Buildings and Communities.

The Beyond Green™ Awards jury will review all of the entries received by the October 31, 2017, deadline, and make their final selections. The Beyond Green™ High-Performance Building & Community Award winners will be invited to present their projects and receive their awards at a special Beyond Green™ Awards Luncheon, to be held during Building Innovation 2018: The National Institute of Building Sciences Fifth Annual Conference and Expo, the week of January 8-11, 2018, in Washington, D.C. At the awards presentation, winners will have an opportunity to share their project results directly with leaders from across the building industry, and highlight the challenges and opportunities they faced on their high-performance projects.

The winning selections will appear as case studies on the WBDG Whole Building Design Guide® website. Additional recognition will include an announcement in the Institute’s newsletter, a plaque and potential inclusion in future Institute technical guidelines and publications.

The deadline to apply for the 2017 Beyond Green™ Awards is Tuesday, October 31, 2017, at 5:00 p.m. ET. Take this opportunity to recognize a deserving high-performance project. Submit an entry today!

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