skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Cost Control Strategies for Zero Energy Buildings: High-Performance Design and Construction on a Budget (Brochure)

Abstract

There is mounting evidence that zero energy can, in many cases, be achieved within typical construction budgets. To ensure that the momentum behind zero energy buildings and other low-energy buildings will continue to grow, this guide assembles recommendations for replicating specific successes of early adopters who have met their energy goals while controlling costs. Contents include: discussion of recommended cost control strategies, which are grouped by project phase (acquisition and delivery, design, and construction) and accompanied by industry examples; recommendations for balancing key decision-making factors; and quick reference tables that can help teams apply strategies to specific projects.

Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Building Technologies Office
OSTI Identifier:
1159345
Report Number(s):
NREL/BR-5500-62752
DOE Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Relation:
Related Information: NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory); For more information, please contact Feitau Kung at Feitau.Kung@nrel.gov.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; ZERO ENERGY BUILDING; ZEB; HIGH-PERFORMANCE BUILDING; COST CONTROL

Citation Formats

Not Available. Cost Control Strategies for Zero Energy Buildings: High-Performance Design and Construction on a Budget (Brochure). United States: N. p., 2014. Web.
Not Available. Cost Control Strategies for Zero Energy Buildings: High-Performance Design and Construction on a Budget (Brochure). United States.
Not Available. Mon . "Cost Control Strategies for Zero Energy Buildings: High-Performance Design and Construction on a Budget (Brochure)". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1159345.
@article{osti_1159345,
title = {Cost Control Strategies for Zero Energy Buildings: High-Performance Design and Construction on a Budget (Brochure)},
author = {Not Available},
abstractNote = {There is mounting evidence that zero energy can, in many cases, be achieved within typical construction budgets. To ensure that the momentum behind zero energy buildings and other low-energy buildings will continue to grow, this guide assembles recommendations for replicating specific successes of early adopters who have met their energy goals while controlling costs. Contents include: discussion of recommended cost control strategies, which are grouped by project phase (acquisition and delivery, design, and construction) and accompanied by industry examples; recommendations for balancing key decision-making factors; and quick reference tables that can help teams apply strategies to specific projects.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Sep 01 00:00:00 EDT 2014},
month = {Mon Sep 01 00:00:00 EDT 2014}
}
  • Momentum behind zero energy building design and construction is increasing, presenting a tremendous opportunity for advancing energy performance in the commercial building industry. At the same time, there is a lingering perception that zero energy buildings must be cost prohibitive or limited to showcase projects. Fortunately, an increasing number of projects are demonstrating that high performance can be achieved within typical budgets. This factsheet highlights replicable, recommended strategies for achieving high performance on a budget, based on experiences from past projects.
  • NREL experienced a significant increase in employees and facilities on our 327-acre main campus in Golden, Colorado over the past five years. To support this growth, researchers developed and demonstrated a new building acquisition method that successfully integrates energy efficiency requirements into the design-build requests for proposals and contracts. We piloted this energy performance based design-build process with our first new construction project in 2008. We have since replicated and evolved the process for large office buildings, a smart grid research laboratory, a supercomputer, a parking structure, and a cafeteria. Each project incorporated aggressive efficiency strategies using contractual energy usemore » requirements in the design-build contracts, all on typical construction budgets. We have found that when energy efficiency is a core project requirement as defined at the beginning of a project, innovative design-build teams can integrate the most cost effective and high performance efficiency strategies on typical construction budgets. When the design-build contract includes measurable energy requirements and is set up to incentivize design-build teams to focus on achieving high performance in actual operations, owners can now expect their facilities to perform. As NREL completed the new construction in 2013, we have documented our best practices in training materials and a how-to guide so that other owners and owner's representatives can replicate our successes and learn from our experiences in attaining market viable, world-class energy performance in the built environment.« less
  • In accordance with federal legislation, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has conducted a project to demonstrate use of its Energy Conservation Voluntary Performance Standards for Commercial and Multi-Family High-Rise Residential Buildings; Mandatory for New Federal Buildings; Interim Rule (referred to in this report as DOE-1993). A key requisite of the legislation requires DOE to develop commercial building energy standards that are cost effective. During the demonstration project, DOE specifically addressed this issue by assessing the impacts of the standards on (1) construction costs, (2) builders (and especially small builders) of multi-family, high-rise buildings, and (3) the ability of low-tomore » moderate-income persons to purchase or rent units in such buildings. This document reports on this project.« less
  • The manual provides both lighting-standard guidelines and low-cost strategies to encourage energy cost control in new and existing Illinois state-building illumination systems. Such guidance should provide a better understanding of simple operations and maintenance changes that will result in significant savings of energy use and cost in Illinois state building utility expense.