Lessons learned from ASHRAE HQ renovation

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Courtesy of Dynamic Air Quality Solutions

George Washington once said, “We should not look back unless it is to derive useful lessons from past errors, and for the purpose of profiting by dearly bought experience.” Since it has been more than five years of occupancy since ASHRAE Headquarters was renovated, this is a good time to revisit the details of the renovation project, the successes, and lessons learned. Future articles will delve deeper into the performance of the various building systems, satisfaction of building occupants, and the new data serving portal.

The original building was constructed in 1965 and was occupied by an insurance company until ASHRAE purchased it in 1980 and relocated to Atlanta from New York City.

ASHRAE did its first major renovation in 1990 by gutting the interior, updating the mechanical systems, installing a new insulated glass curtain wall system, and abating asbestos materials on the interior.

The building was extensively renovated again in 2007–08 and approximately 4,000 ft2 (371 m2) of space was added to the existing 30,000 ft2 (2800 m2) building. A significant portion of this larger building was used to create the new ASHRAE Foundation Learning Center, which allows ASHRAE to host large meetings and training sessions on-site. For comparison, the old building had six meeting rooms totaling 2,000 ft2 (185 m2), and the new building has triple the number of meeting rooms and four times the amount of meeting space. The building is unique in that it contains three mechanical systems for heating, cooling and ventilation:

  1. Dedicated outdoor air system (DOAS) for first and second floor ventilation;
  2. Variable refrigerant flow (VRF) system with heat recovery for first floor heating and cooling; and
  3. Ground source heat pump (GSHP) system for second floor heating and cooling.

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