The 2nd annual Michigan Battle of the Buildings Energy Summit celebrated the combined energy reductions of 28.5 million ft2 of Michigan real estate with a decrease in nearly 16,000 metric tons of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent). Converting to laymen’s terms – that’s the same as reducing over 37 million miles driven by an average passenger vehicle.
The 2015 contestants came together on Earth Day, April 22, 2016 the same day that 34 countries representing 49% of Green House Gas Emissions signed the Paris Climate Agreement at the largest single day signing in history.
The local event at the JW Marriott in Grand Rapids hosted 3 keynote speakers including Garrick Rochow, VP at Consumers Energy, Roger Curtis, President at Michigan International Speedway and the Honorable Aric Nesbitt, House Committee on Energy Chair. Guests of the full day event enjoyed breakout sessions on Clean Energy Makes Sense, Indoor Air Quality, Financing & Cash Incentives and Lessons Learned by Battle of the Building competitors from Kent County, CBRE, Spectrum Health, Ford Field/Detroit Lions, Odawa Casino, Van Andel Institute and Catalyst-Partners. Other speakers from the Michigan Public Service Commission, Environmental Protection Agency, Michigan Saves, Lean & Green Michigan and DTE Energy shared tools, resources and insights on Michigan’s Energy Future.
During breaks, guests visited with exhibitors from Patriot Solar Group; Bratic Enterprises; Consumers Energy; DTE Energy; Energy Focus; Electro-Matic Visual; Grand Rapids Business Journal; Hurst Mechanical; FTC&H architects & engineers; Michigan Saves, Midwest Energy Group, Porous Pave, Ryzen Lighting Group, Solar Winds Power Systems and TowerPinkster architects and engineers who displayed products & services to help the built (and yet to be built) environment learn new ways to to accomplish our world wide goals.
Post conference surveys revealed that attendees rated the networking at the Energy Summit as 5-star and the consistent growth of the competition-nearly triple each year- speaks to the eagerness of building owners & operators to learn new ways to accomplish more while consuming less energy. Every climate zone has its unique challenges and learning from each other can provide a first hand look at inspiring ways our neighbors are meeting these growing demands.
The Energy Summit awarded the top 2 “biggest losers” from 9 categories.
The Meanwhile reduced 20.67%
The Pyramid Scheme reduced 18.07%
Muskegon County HealthWest reduced 4.42%
Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial reduced 1.49%
Nu-Wool Co., Inc. reduced 11.06%
Innotec Life Space Division reduced 10.89%
Mixed Use Category:
Parker Hannifin FSC reduced 6.42%
SMG DeVos Convention Center reduced 6.03%
Hollander Development Valley View III reduced 8.44%
River House at Bridgewater Place Condominiums reduced 4.17%
Office Building Category:
Comerica Stadium-Pauline Branch reduced 21.27%
Fifth Third Bank reduced 15.27%
Greenleaf Hospitality Group Radisson Plaza Hotel reduced 16.80%
Nichols Corporate Headquarters reduced 10.84%
Public Buildings Category:
Muskegon’s Louis A McMurray Conference & Transportation reduced 10.40%
City of Grand Rapids Water Resource Facility reduced 9.10%
St. Clair County Community College MTEC Building reduced 31.93%
Holland Public High School reduced 10.62%
The Michigan Battle of the Buildings is the only state-wide energy competition in the country and Michigan is being recognized on a national level. The EPA EnergyStar national Battle of the Buildings will cease in 2017 in lieu of encouraging more local competitions and we are thrilled to be leading this conversation.
Change is on the horizon and the reward is better air quality, economic advantage and we all hope – a slowing of the rise in global temperature.
Thank you to all that attended the 2015 Michigan Battle of the Buildings Earth Day Energy Summit. We’ll see you next year!
On February 12, 2016 nearly 50 professionals from the following backgrounds; architects, engineers of all types, construction managers, facility planning and managers, landscape designers, and interior designers, gathered together to brainstorm at a hosted hack-a-thon about healthy spaces for students to learn, specifically for students of Grand Rapids Public Schools.
In November of 2015, a $175 million bond proposal was passed for Grand Rapids Public Schools. The bond plan was created based upon the work of the 2008 Building Improvement Plan Phase II steering committee, the Transformation Plan and input from district leaders. As there will be a number of construction projects and more hard work ahead. The intent of the hack-a-thon was to provide ideas and input from the green building community.
A Hack-a-thon follows a specific process which will be used to identify options for GRPS to consider. The group was split up into seven teams who were assigned one of seven school buildings that GRPS will be renovating or constructing. Carefully chosen facilitators lead each team through several rounds of brainstorming starting with a vision of what green schools may look like 100 years from now. Each round they brought the ideas closer to reality, closer to what they may look like tomorrow or next year.
The goal for GRPS was to not only glean ideas from the day about green schools but have the hope of integrating some of them into their design and construction policies.
Please view our video summarizing the day: https://vimeo.com/161850340
Wheels For Wishes & Wellness is a car donation program benefiting Children’s Hospitals and Charities in Michigan. We are proud to offer a free and easy way to recycle or donate unwanted cars, trucks, motorcycles, SUVs, RVs, or even boats, by turning them into a wish for a local child. We pick-up or tow away cars free of charge, anywhere in Michigan, whether they run or not. Vehicles are either recycled or auctioned off and proceeds benefit local kids with life-threatening illnesses.
West Michigan Symphony Completes its Green Roof with a Unique Porous Pave Patio
The West Michigan Symphony, the professional orchestra in Muskegon, Mich., has been part of the area’s cultural landscape since 1939. In 2013, they moved their administrative and ticketing offices into the newly renovated Russell Block Building. Situated in downtown Muskegon a block away from the Frauenthal Theater where the symphony performs, the historic Russell Block Building dates back to 1890.
“The move gave us the opportunity to fulfill a long-deferred dream: having a flexible space for smaller fine arts performances and education programs,” said Carla Hill, the symphony’s president and chief executive officer.
Named The Block, the 1,800-square-foot space includes seating on two levels for up to 150. In addition to providing an intimate venue for the symphony, The Block is available for meetings and special events. Its west-facing windows look out toward Muskegon Lake. However, an unsightly old tar roof right outside the windows spoiled the view.
Port City Construction & Development Services, LLC, Muskegon, Mich., the company which planned and managed the building renovation, Fleis & VandenBrink, Inc., Grand Rapids, Mich., the project’s landscape architecture firm, and officials from the symphony discussed what might be done. They envisioned transforming the unadorned roof into a rooftop patio and garden.
“The goal was to create an accessible and appealing outdoor space for The Block,” said Harry Wierenga, landscape architect, Fleis & VandenBrink, Inc. “We designed a 900-square-foot green roof with 380 square feet of vegetation and a 520-square-foot patio.”
Fixing the Roof
“The existing roof was tar over a concrete deck. Several holes had been boarded up and patched with tar,” said Gary Post, manager, Port City Construction & Development Services. “To add the green roof, we first had to re-roof.”
The Port City crew removed the existing roof down to the concrete deck, which they repaired. The installed two new roof drains. The crew fully adhered a new single-ply membrane to the deck. Next came a geotextile fabric to protect the membrane and a geotextile drain sheet atop the protection fabric. The drain sheet provides drainage to the existing and two added roof drains.
A new 40-inch-high wall around the roof shelters the outdoor space and makes it safer. The project also included widening the opening out to the rooftop from the interior of The Block and glass double doors for a generous, transparent transition from indoors to outdoors.
Finding the Right Surface
The pavement material for the patio had to meet a rigorous set of requirements:
The project team assessed composite decking and concrete pavers. These linear materials were not flexible enough to conform to the shape of the patio or versatile enough to convey the musical note design.
“Pavers could be cut to fit the patio’s shape and express the design, but not seamlessly,” said Hill. “We did not want it to end up looking like a jigsaw puzzle.”
Pavers presented another problem. With a permeable paver system, the threshold from the patio to the new doors would have been four inches, a tripping hazard.
So what paving material would work?
Wierenga had used Porous Pave in projects at grade. “I knew that it is lightweight, permeable, and pourable within forms to conform to the angles of the patio and give us the musical note pattern,” he said.
Porous Pave XL consists of 50 percent recycled rubber chips and 50 percent stone aggregate with a moisture-cured liquid binder. Porous Pave XLS is 100 percent recycled rubber chips with a more elastic binder. One inch of the XLS all-rubber formulation, weighing only three pounds per square foot, was installed for the patio.
“We engineered Porous Pave for permeability with more void space than other permeable pavement options. Water goes right through to the drain sheet, leaving no puddles of rainwater,” said Dave Ouwinga, president, Porous Pave, Inc., Grant, Mich. “The threshold ended up at only an inch and a half. The recycled rubber makes Porous Pave a green material and slip-resistant as well.”
Offsite, wood forms were constructed in the shapes of the four musical notes. Before the Porous Pave XLS was poured into the forms, the sides were coated with vegetable oil so the material would not adhere to them as it cured. On the rooftop, the completed note pieces were positioned in place, and the rest of Porous Pave XLS was mixed and poured around the notes. The three lines through the musical notes that contribute to the page of music design were poured into forms on the rooftop.
The installation achieved a smooth and seamless expression of the design. The gray and black custom color mix harmonizes with the color of the new wall and complements the gray concrete elements of the Russell Block Building.
“We had not previously used this pour-in-place, permeable paving material on a rooftop,” commented Post. “Based on the results and the material’s performance since installation, we would recommend Porous Pave and specify it again for rooftop applications, particularly where its light weight would be an advantage because of load considerations.”
~Written by the USGBC Chapter Partner, Porous Pave