Case Study: Designing Laboratories to LEED
Gold Standards in the Southeast Region
Randall Larsen, AIA, The FWA Group
David Crutchfield, RMF Engineering,
This presentation will be a case study of the new School of Public
Health at the University of South Carolina, currently under construction.
The presentation will discuss the various design features incorporated
in order to meet the goals of LEED V2.1 Gold certification
and Labs21's Environmental Performance Criteria (EPC). The University's
initial goal of LEED Silver rating for the laboratory/classroom
building is anticipated to be exceeded by the introduction of the
EPC as a major innovation component of design. Additionally, the
presentation will elaborate on the design process and the strategies
By nature, university facilities are built for long term use and
the design inherently includes components that are intended to promote
efficiencies. These standard design components, when enhanced or
adjusted slightly, provide for ease of implementation of sustainable
features and criteria and subsequent LEED Certification. The
presentation will include the following examples:
- Underground rainwater catchment system (used for irrigation
of xeriscaped plantings on site)
- Water saving features (30% water reduction)
- Rapidly renewable materials - laboratory casework
- Certified wood - laboratory and institutional casework
- Controllability of systems, non-perimeter
- Daylighting strategies & lab lighting
- Optimize energy performance
- WEp1 - Laboratory equipment water use
- EAp2 - Minimum energy performance
- EAp4 - Access minimum ventilation requirements
- MRp2 - Hazardous material handling
- EQp3 - Laboratory ventilation
- EQp4 - Exterior door notification system
- EA9.2 - (right size) Laboratory equipment load, metering
- EA9.3 - Indoor environmental safety, alarm systems
- EQ9.2 - Indoor Environmental safety, fume hood commissioning
As a founding member of South Carolina's Sustainable Universities
Initiative, the University's goal in the initial phase of the building's
design was to achieve LEED Silver rating on this project.
By establishing this goal early in project development, the design
team was able to implement a holistic approach from day one and
allow for evaluation and application throughout the process. Early
implementation was key. By utilizing the Labs21 Approach, the design
team was able to pursue four Innovation in Design credits including
all Labs21 prerequisites, which elevated the certification from
Silver to Gold rating. These prerequisites and credits included
Laboratory equipment water use, minimum energy performance, access
minimum ventilation requirements, hazardous material handling, laboratory
ventilation, exterior door notification system, laboratory equipment
load metering, lab alarm systems and fume hood commissioning. Six
LEED Accredited Professionals were members of the design team.
Randall Larsen, AIA, is President of The FWA Group, an architecture
firm specializing in research and educational facilities. Mr. Larsen
has specialized in laboratory and R&D facilities in both the
United States and Canada since 1979 as an architect, as a special
consultant, and as an owner which provides him with a unique perspective.
His work is concentrated in Higher Education, Health Science Centers,
and the Biopharmaceutical industry. Currently, Mr. Larsen is involved
with three laboratory projects in Colorado and one in North Carolina.
One of the Colorado projects is a Regional Biocontainment Laboratory,
one of nine across the country funded by NIAID as part of the anti-terrorism
initiatives of the Federal Government.
Mr. Larsen's professional affiliations include the American Biological
Safety Association, the American Association for Laboratory Animal
Science, the American Institute of Architects, and the Construction
Specifications Institute. He is a registered architect in Hawaii,
Colorado, Wyoming, Arizona, North Carolina, and Kansas.
David Crutchfield is a mechanical
project manager with over 12 years of engineering experience. He
has extensive experience in the design and analysis of mechanical
systems serving institutional campuses and laboratory/research campuses.
His experience includes new as well as renovation work and frequently
includes the coordination of multiple construction phases.
Mr. Crutchfield has participated in the design of several LEED
certified facilities. Additionally, he has designed many significant
laboratory/research facilities. Most recently, Mr. Crutchfield completed
the design for a 600,000 SF pharmaceutical/production facility which
serves as the World Headquarters for Human Genome Sciences.
Mr. Crutchfield performs detailed engineering economic analyses
for each project to support his engineering approach. His projects
achieve the optimal balance of energy efficiency, ease of maintenance,
reliability and initial cost. His primary role on projects is Lead
Mechanical Engineer, responsible for all aspects of the mechanical
design. He handles the complete coordination of all production work
and communication with the client.
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