2 Table of Contents Introduction ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 4 Sustainability at the University of Florida ................................ ................................ ...................... 5 LEED Background and Pitfalls ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 6 Living Building Challenge: What is it? ................................ ................................ .......................... 7 The Lacrosse Locker Room Facility ................................ ................................ ............................. 10 Living Building Challenge Certification Options ................................ ................................ ......... 12 Petal by Petal: Examining Feasibility ................................ ................................ ........................... 15 Petal 01: Place ................................ ................................ ................................ ........................... 15 Imperative 01: Limits to Growth ................................ ................................ ........................... 15 Imperative 02: Urban Agriculture ................................ ................................ ......................... 17 Imperative 03 Habitat Exchange ................................ ................................ ........................ 18 Imperative 04 Human Powered Living ................................ ................................ .............. 19 Petal 02 Water ................................ ................................ ................................ ........................ 20 Imperative 05 Net Positive Water ................................ ................................ ...................... 21 Petal 03 Energy ................................ ................................ ................................ ...................... 24 Imperative 06 Net Positive Energy ................................ ................................ ..................... 24 Petal 04 Health + Happiness ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 27 Imperative 07 Civilized Environment ................................ ................................ ................ 27 Imperative 08 Healthy Interior Environment ................................ ................................ ..... 29 Imperative 09 Biophilic Environment ................................ ................................ ................ 30 Petal 05 Materials ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 32 Imperative 10 Red List ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 32 Imperative 11 Embodied Carbon Footprint ................................ ................................ ........ 34 Imperative 12 Responsible Industry ................................ ................................ ................... 35 Imperative 13 Livi ng Economy Sourcing ................................ ................................ .......... 35 Imperative 14 Net Positive Waste ................................ ................................ ...................... 37 Petal 06 Equity ................................ ................................ ................................ ....................... 39 Imperative 15 Human Scale + Humane Space ................................ ................................ ... 39 Imperative 16 Universal Access to Nature & Place ................................ ........................... 40 Imperative 17 Equitable Investment ................................ ................................ ................... 40
3 Imperative 18 Just Organizations ................................ ................................ ....................... 41 Petal 07 Beauty ................................ ................................ ................................ ....................... 42 Imperative 19 Beauty + Spirit ................................ ................................ ............................ 42 Imperative 20 Inspiration + Education ................................ ................................ ............... 43 Other Considerations ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 44 Bottom Line: Is Living Building Challenge Feasible at UF? ................................ ....................... 45 Extrapolating Results Campus Wide ................................ ................................ ............................ 46 Conclusion ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 48 References ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 50
4 Introduction The University of Florida is one of the top public u niversities in the count r y and it is always looking for new ways to improve Over the last couple of decades, the university has made a concerted effort to make the campus more environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable. This has been done through a number of initiatives and programs, and is still ongoing today. In 2003 the University began certifying buildings under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, prescribed by the U.S. Green Buil ding Council (USGBC). Ever since, the University has been a leader in energy efficient design across college campuses, boasting a host of LEED certified buildings. In recent years, another rating system has gained popularity. The Living Building Challenge (LBC), prescribed by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) is often considered the most stringent rating system in the world. The university has not yet pursued this certification for a n y building, new or existing, on campus. This is understandable, as Living Buildings are often perceived as more difficult and expensive to design, construct, and maintain. The purpose of this research is to determine if this assessment is accurate. More specifically, it will seek to assess the feasibili ty of applying Living Building Challenge standards to an existing building on campus. The assessment will be made by first examining the parameters and requirements necessary to achieve certification. Then, these parameters and requirements will be applied Through this case study, the feasibility of applying LBC principles to an existing building on campus will be examined. Lastly, the findings will be extrapolated to campus as a w hole. These findings will act as the groundwork for a final suggestion to the University regarding whether or not Living Building Challenge is something that should be pursued on campus.
5 Sustainability at the University of Florida As it was briefly mention ed in the introduction, the University of Florida strives to be a leader in sustainability and an example for college campuses across the country and the rest of the world. The UF Campus Mas ter Plan outlines strategies for land use and responsible stewardship of resources that support one conservation areas on campus alone and has over sixty acres dedicated to educating stu dents and the public about ecology, biodiversity, and sustainability. The first LEED building on campus was certified in 2003, and the University has not looked back since. The most recent data indicates the university is home to 84 LEED certified building s, broken down into the following categories: 13 LEED Platinum buildings 27 LEED Gold buildings 12 LEED Silver buildings 14 LEED Certified buildings 18 LEED Registered buildings The university is also proudly home to the first ever LEED Platinum building i n the state of Florida, the Heavener Football Complex. This flagship project was the trailblazer for more All new construction on campus and any renovations have to adhere to a minimum of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold standards Through policies like this one, the university is ensuring a sustainable future for the built environment on campus. If the current trend continues over the coming years, we should expect to see a requirement for any new buildings on campus to meet minimum LEED Platinum
6 requirements in the future. Overall, the current campus building codes are beneficial to advancing sustainability and green initiatives on campus and in the greater Gainesville community. LEED Background and Pitfalls While this research is not based on the LEED rating system or the U.S. Green Building Council, it is important to give background information about the building rating system to create a benchmark for comparison to Living Building Challenge standards. LEED was first developed in the early 1990s and expanded greatly over the following decade. The certification system began to grow exponentially after the turn of the century, and the process has been continually revised and updated with each new version. Ther e are four main levels of certification: LEED Certified, LEED Silver, LEED Gold, and LEED Platinum. There are also different rating systems for different types of buildings and projects ranging from new construction to existing buildings and from homes to interiors. Overall, the LEED rating system has been very successful and there are thousands of buildings across the country and beyond that have used the certification to demonstrate excellence in efficiency and sustainable design. Although LEED is often considered a rousing success and is still the most widely used green building rating system in the country, it is not without flaws. There are many critics of LEED who raise legitimate concerns regarding how environmentally sustainable the rating system ac tually is One of the biggest criticisms LEED often faces is its prioritization of energy efficiency. While this is not inherently a bad thing, critics argue that LEED values energy efficiency over other aspects of building performance like human health an d well being. Furthermore, modern building materials and practices have made it significantly easier to achieve lower tier LEED Certifications with little to no added cost to the project budget. Critics
7 argue that some projects are pursuing LEED certificat ion to use as a marketing tool rather than to improve building efficiency and further sustainability in the built environment. A final criticism of LEED is that it does not heavily weigh the location of a project in to its rating. An example given in Jeff S Walkable City is when the Environmental Protection Agency relocated its region seven headquarters from downtown Kansas City, Missouri to a LEED certified building twenty miles away in a suburb of the city. This led to employees having to commute fur ther to work each day, resulting in increased vehicle miles traveled, thus increasing carbon emissions. for the environment. While the two are not mutually exclusive, problems can arise as the previous example shows. However, w hile these are valid criticis ms of LEED and should be taken into consideration, most would argue that t he LEED rating system has still had a net positive impact on the sustainability of buildings and the built environment in general. It is important to consider all aspects of LEED, both positive and negative, when comparing it to Living Building Challenge a nd examining the viability of both on campus. Living Building Challenge: What is it? The Living Building Challenge (LBC) is a building standard and building certification system developed in 2006 by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI). The In stitute describes Living Building Challenge as a Environmentalists and developers from around the world often rega rd the Living Building Challenge as the most stringent building rating system ever created. aspect of the challenge that makes this justification valid. Rather, the entire process is much more
8 intense and demanding than any other rat ing system in the industry today. The main challenge of achieving Living Building Certification is tackling the massive hurdles with respect to building design and performance. While LEED and other rating systems demand high efficiency, Living Building Cha llenge demands near perfect efficiency with total building self sufficiency on a closed loop system. This will be explained in greater detail later, but essentially, the building must be net positive in nearly every category. Net positive water, Net positi ve energy, Net positive waste, and a daunting red list that prohibits some of the most common building materials are just a few of the hurdles that must be overcome. Aside from increased efficiency and designing a closed loop system for a building, what ta kes Living Building Challenge to an even higher level is its emphasis on beauty, integration of nature, biophilic design, promotion of social and cultural integration, and equity. These imperatives, which will each be discussed at length, lay the ground wo rk for a building that will have a net positive impact on all three pillars of sustainability.
9 The graph above does a great job of illustrating where Living Building Challenge stands with respect to other types of buildings. While the requirements may seem difficult, or even impossible to achieve, the positive regenerative impacts created by a living building is enough of a justification for developers and clients alike across the country to begin striving for certification. I t is also important to consider that over the coming years, as renewable energy and highly efficient building materials continue to become more affordable, achieving Living Certification for a building will become easier. In the context of Living Buildin g Challenge for existing buildings, there are a few key differences to consider. While all of the major building requirements still remain true (Net positive water, net positive energy, etc.) there are a few exceptions made for existing buildings. This is because in the eyes of the International Living Future Institute and anyone familiar with sustainable development in general for that matter bringing an existing building up to Living Building Challenge standards is far more sustainable than building an en tirely new building from the ground up. This is because less materials are used in renovations as opposed to new construction. Also, renovating buildings prevents sprawl and ensures that virgin land and protected habitats are not damaged in the name of dev elopment. W hat exactly makes Living Building Challenge so much better than LEED? As it was previously explained, Living Building Challenge is much more of a holistic approach to building sustainability. Through the Living Building rating system, the goal of the International Living Future Institute is to promote ultra efficient buildings that are self sufficient and promote all aspects of sustainability. They maximize environmental sustainability through efficiency imperatives like net positive water and net positive energy, they maximize social sustainability by creating a building with strongly defined place and cul ture rooted deeply in the surrounding
10 community. The buildings are designed with the human in mind through principles like human scale, maximized daylighting, and biophilic design. While the projects often carry a higher initial any support from the municipal power grid or water supply. Furthermore, they are able to treat all of their waste on site and are designed with resiliency in mind. A building operatin g on a closed loop with a significantly higher life expectancy will almost always be more economically sustainable than a high efficiency building that incorporates some sustainability principles. To provide contrast, as it was discussed in the LEED sectio n, LEED and other green rating systems are often focused on improving building efficiency and performance, which typically takes precedence over other aspects of sustainability such as equity and creating a sense of place. improved efficiency and incorporating sustainability into building design is always a good thing Living Building Challenge is simply much more expansive and holistic in its approach. The Lacrosse Locker Room Facility
11 Locker Room Facility is the building chosen as a case study for this project. It is located on the main University of Florida campus, east of the UF Cultural Plaza and across the street from the Katie Seashole Pressley Softball Stadium and the Southwest R ecreation Center. At 10,712 square feet and packed with all the amenities college athletes desire, it is one of the premiere lacrosse locker room facilities in the entire country. The project was built in 2009 to LEED BD+C: New Construction standards under LEED Version 2.2. The Building was certified in February of 2011 under these same standards, receiving 41 out of a possible 69 points, qualifying it for LEED Gold certification. Impressively, 41 points puts the Lacrosse Locker Room in the top 30% of all p rojects under that version of LEED. The project is part of a larger complex that includes sports fields, stadium seating, a concession stand, concourse, and much more. However, for the purposes of this project, only the LEED boundary land that includes the locker room itself, a small parking lot, and landscaping will be considered. As the name indicates, the buildi ng is primarily used to meetings, rehabilitation, and recruiting events. It team for practices and s crimmages. The facility has been used irregularly to host other athletic events such as pre season football practices, high school athletic ev ents, and traveling club athletic events. Whether or not the locker room building itself is utilized during these events is unclear, but the rest of the facility is so it is important to note. Overall, the Lacrosse Locker Room is a state of the organizations.
12 Living Building Challenge Certification Options Under the Living Building Challe nge rating system prescribed by the International Living Future Institute, there are several by new or existing buildings. For this project, only the certification options available to existi ng buildings under the renovation typology will be discussed. The Living Building Challenge is
13 re is a total of twenty imperatives under the most recent version of the Living Building Challenge standard. an existing building under the renovation typol ogy, a project must achieve sixteen out of twenty imperatives. The remaining four imperatives are exempt for existing building renovation projects as they are only relevant for new construction. If achieving Living Certification is not possible or out of t Certification but it requires that less imperatives be met. For existing buildings under the renovation typology, Petal Certification requires that three of seven p etals be met, one of which must be water, energy, or materials. On top of the three petals, the project must meet the requirements for Imperative 01: Limits to Growth and Imperative 20: Inspiration + Education. The final certification option for existing b
14 the easiest to achieve. To achieve this certification, the building must supply 100% of its net annual en ergy needs by on site renewables. In addition to achieving net zero energy for the building, the project must meet the requirements for Imperative 01: Limits to Growth, Imperative 06: Net Positive Energy (reduced from 105% to 100% net annual energy supply from on site renewables), Imperative 19: Beauty + Spirit, and Imperative 20: Inspiration + Education. While Living Certification is obviously the paramount achievement with respect to Living Building Challenge, it is important to temper expectations. Ac hieving the highest level of certification for any building is extremely difficult, and can be derailed in many different ways. Realistically assessing the different certification options and their feasibility, Petal Certification seems like it lies much c loser to the realm of possibility. While there are obviously hurdles that come along with any of these certifications, only needing to achieve three out of the seven petals allows for much more leeway to reduce costs and make the renovation less difficult and
15 intensive. However, for the sake of exploring all possibilities, this project will examine and determine the feasibility of each imperative individually. This will provide a much more accurate assessment and allow for a final, evidence based suggestion at the end of the study. Petal by Petal: Examining Feasibility In this section of the report, each Imperative will be examined individually. First, the imperative will be explained, including the intent, background, and requirements. Then, the feasibility of achieving that imperative in a renovation of the Lacrosse Locker Room facility will be examined. Lastly, a final assessment will be given: attainable, attainable but not practical, or not attainable. Petal 01: Place intent of the Place Petal is to realign how people understand and relate to the natural environment that sustains us. The human built environme nt must reconnect with the d eep story of place and the unique characteristics found in every community so that sto ry can be honored, protected and enhanced. The Place Petal clearly art iculates where it is acceptable for people to build, how to protect and restore a place once it has been developed, and how to encourage the creation of communities that are once again b ased on the pedestrian rather than the automobile. In turn, these communities n eed to be supported by a web of local and regional agriculture, since no truly sustainable community can rely on globally sourced food production. Imperative 01: Limits to Growth Imperative to curb urban sprawl and the destruction o f virgi n and/or protected land. As far as existing buildings are concerned, there are a few different options to satisfy this imperative. The
16 first criterion that will result in the achievement of this imperative is if the existing building is on a greyfield site that was altered from a greenfield site on or before December 31 st 2007. If the building does not meet this criterion it must be an existing building that was built on a greyfield or brownfield site. To quickly define what these terms mean, a greenfield i s any plot of land that greyfield site is any site that has been developed on previously. For Living Building Challenge, this includes existing hardscapes, previous ly developed urban plots, agricultural land, etc. Brownfields are previously developed sites that have been contaminated by a pollutant that is harmful to the environment and/or human health. A local example of this type of land is the Cabot Koppers Superfund Site, which is a registered brownfield site that was contaminated with chromated copper arsenate from a wood treatment facility on the site. Living Building Challenge requires that any brownfield sites seeking certification are remediated before construction begins. There are a few exemptions for this Imperative, but generally the building must fall into on e of the aforementioned categories. One notable exemption is the allowance of development on greenfield or protected land if the building will be used to provide visitors with access to nature or educate them about ecology, biodiversity, or conservation. A good example of this type of adja cent to a protected wilderness. At first glance, the Lacrosse Locker Room does not meet any of these criteria. It was built in 2009, well after the December 31 st 2007 deadline. It also was not built on a brownfield site, nor is it designed to provide access to and educate visitors about nature. However, under Living Building Challenge guid elines, the building is located on what i s considered a greyfield site. The Lacrosse Locker Room stands on what was once agricultural land used by the U niversity for
17 research. In the eyes of the International Living Future Institute, that is considered previous development. Thus, Imperative 01: L imits to Growth is attainable for the Lacrosse Locker Room project. Imperative 02: Urban Agriculture The intent of this imperative is to reconnect communities with their food sources, providing them with a way to cultivate food locally for their own nouri shment. It is impossible for a community to be truly sustainable if it relies on nationally or internationally sourced food production. Instead, this i mperative attempts to re emphasize the importance of developing a strong network of locally sourced food options that can feed the entire community. To satisfy this imperative, a project must demonstrate and integrate opportunities for agriculture scaled to the size of the building using floor area ratio (FAR). The table below illustrates this concept. Whi le this is a great initiative and something all Living Building projects should consider implementing, existing buildings under the renovation typology are exempt from this imperative.
18 The Place Petal Handbook does not give any reasoning as to why existing building renovations are exempt, but some inferences can be made. The most likely reason for the exemption is that in most renovation projects, the land area and property lines are already established. If the building is large, it may not have enough spac e available to install the appropriate agricultural amenities. However, on a new construction project, the building can always be designed with a more reasonable FAR or more land can be purchased to create the necessary space to meet the requirement. Impe rative 03 Habitat Exchange The purpose of this imperative is to expand and protect wilderness areas so they cannot be subjected to development or resource extraction. To meet this requirement, each acre of land that the project uses for development must be counted and an equal amount of land must be set aside away fro m the project site and protected in perpetuity. This can be done through the organization. This imperative is relatively straight forward and there is not much con fusion in what is required. However, some people may confuse or not understand what a habitat exchange program is. Essentially, these programs are managed by non profit organizations who either own land, or work in conjunction with a land owner. If the lan d is believed to have valuable resources like virgin land, rare or endangered flor or fauna, etc. the land can be certified by the EPA as eligible for exchange. The non profit then divides this land in acre units, which allows them to be parsed out among b uyers. The exchange is usually a long term lease, often 10 years, and the buyer must renew at the end of each period. Non profit exchanges are much cheaper than the exchanges run by for profit companies. The International Living Future Institute would not release any pri
19 found online indicates that the more expensive, for profit exchanges carry an average price of $500 $3000 per acre, per decade. LEED boundary (the boundary used for this project), is about 1.09 acres. To satisfy this imperative, the project would need to purchase at least 1.09 acres of habitat exchange land. While the real price cannot be determined, based on the cheapest price ava ilable from a for profit exchange, it would cost $545 every 10 years to satisfy this imperative. This is relatively inexpensive and a small price to pay to achieve an entire imperative. Therefore, Imperative 03 Habitat Exchange is attainable and easily w ithin the realm of possibility. Imperative 04 Human Powered Living The intent of this imperative is to reduce carbon emissions and reliance on automobiles through an emphasis on pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure on the project site and in the greate r community. Ideally this will encourage connected and compact communities that do not need to rely on the convenience of an automobile to go about their daily lives in an effective and efficient manner. Each new project should contribute toward the creation of walkable, pede strian oriented communities and must not lower the density of the existing site. Teams must evaluate the potenti al for a project to enhance the ability of a community to support a human powere d lifestyle, and provide a mob ility plan, which addresses the interior and exterior of the proje graphic below:
20 While this is a great imperative and something that all projects should strive to accomplish, once again, existing buildings under the renovation typology are exempt from this imperative. As with Imperative 02, no justification as to why existing buildings are exempt is given. However, one can infer that it would be difficult sometimes even impossi ble for existing buildings within communities to develop this kind of human powered transportation infrastructure. It would simply require too much change and would be a logistical nightmare, which is not truly sustainable at all. However, in a hypothetica l world, this imperative would not be too difficult for the Lacrosse Locker Room to achieve. Given that the site is part of a university campus, there is already a strong emphasis on pedestrian and bicycle transportation. There are sidewalks and bike lanes in most areas of the campus and walkability was clearly taken into consideration. Therefore, it would only require minor changes and upgrades to the project to meet the requirements for this imperative. Therefore, Imperative 04 Human Powered Living with respect to the Lacrosse Locker Room is attainable, but exempt. Petal 02 Water The intent of the Water Petal is to realign how people use water and to
21 redefine in the built environment so that water is re spected as a precious resource. Scarcity of potable water is quickly becoming a serious issue as many countries around the world face severe shortages and compromised water quality. Even regions that have avoided the majority of these probl ems to date due to a historical presence of abundant fresh water are at risk: the impacts o f cli mate change, highly unsustainable water use patterns, and the conti nued drawdown of major aquifers portend significant problems ahead. Imperative 05 Net Positive Water The intent of this imperative is to develop a closed loop water syste m on the project site that mimics natural hydrological processes. According to the International Living Future Project water use and release must work in harmony with the natural water flows of the site and its surroundin needs must be sup plied by captured precipitation or other natural closed loop water systems, and/or by recycling used project water, and must be purified as needed without the use of chemicals. andbook) The graphic below illustrates how the hydrologic cycle should function before and after the development of a living building:
22 With respect to existing buildings under the renovation typology, there are no major exceptions or exemptions. All pro jects, regardless of type or style, are required to adhere to the same general guidelines. However, because the Lacrosse Locker Room is part of the University of Florida campus, there are exceptions and exemptions to consider. The university currently has a contract with Gainesville Regional Utility, who supplies municipal potable water to all the buildings on campus. As part of this contract, all buildings are required to remain connected to municipal water lines. While this appears to be a major issue, th e Living Building guidelines have an exception for this specific issue. In the Water Petal Handbook, Exception I05 E1 4/2010: I f health or utility regulations require a project to use municipal potable sources, it is allowed, but only for potable uses, including sinks, faucets, janitorial uses, and showers. Non potable uses such as toilet flushing, clothes washing, irrigation, an d equipment uses must use water sourced from the project site. While it is not required, the p roject is encouraged to include full rainwater harvesting capacity in anticipation of future regulatory accep tance of additional rainwater use. water that needs to come from the project site is greywater for the uses listed above. That is easily achievable through rainwater harvesting and drawing from the pre existing well on site. Despite the municipal water supply exception, calculations were conducted to determine the feasibility of a hypothe tical scenario where all water for the project needs to come from the project site. Water consumption data from 2016 and 2017 indicates an average annual demand of 1436.64 kgal. While this seems abnormally high for a 10,000 ft 2 building, calculations assum ed harvesting, the roof area is the same as the building area, 10,712 ft 2 The average annual rainfall in Gainesville is 47.37 inches. Based on these numbers, the roo f alone would provide 316.32
23 kgal/year. Subtracting the rainwater total from the annual consumption figure gives a difference of 1,120.32 kgal/year. Because there is a pre existing well on site, this deficit can be met through the well alone. It is also i mportant to consider wastewater on site as much of the water that goes into the building will be coming right back out as wastewater. Typically, all of this grey and blackwater would need to be treated on the project site. However, because the project site is part of a campus, the project is permitted to use the wastewater treatment facility. The facility itself uses 100% natural processes to treat the water up until the last phase where it is chlorinated. For the purpose of Living Building Challenge, water is not allowed to be chlorinated. However, because the building serves more than thirty people, the water is allowed to be chlorinated. However, any water that comes back on site from the treatment facility must be dechlorinated using a 0.5 mm micron carbo n block filter. On site water treatment is the last piece of the imperative to consider. Rainwater, groundwater from the well, and water from the wastewater treatment facility are all considered non potable water sources. Therefore, they need to be treate d on site. As it was mentioned in the previous paragraph, Living Building Challenge does not allow for the use of Chlorine, Sodium Hypochlorite, Calcium Hypochlorite, or other chemical sanitizers to clean the water. Instead, the water must be treated with an Ozone system, a n Ultraviolet (UV) system, or an in line carbon filter. To be safe, it would be best to use two of the systems in conjunction. The most obvious pairing would be an in line carbon filter and either an Ozone or a UV system. Overall, Imper ative 05 Net Positive Water is attainable for the Lacrosse Locker Room renovation project. The exception for municipal water makes the imperative much easier to achieve, but data indicates the imperative could be achieved even without the exception.
24 Peta l 03 Energy Standard 3.1 Handbook The intent of the Energy Petal is to signal a new a ge of design, wherein the built environment relies solely on renewable forms of ene rgy and operates year round in a safe, pollution free manner. In addition, it ai ms to prioritize reductions and optimization before technological solutions ar e applied to eliminate wasteful spending of energy, resources, and dollars Impera tive 06 Net Positive Energy The intent of this imperative is straightforward to rely on renewable energy for all of annual energy needs are met by renewable sources on site. New to LBC Standard 3.1, a resiliency component is required, which mandates that a building must have the capacity to store at a minimum the With respect to the Lacr osse Locker Room renovation project, there are two exceptions that apply. The first, I06 SJ2: Campus Remote Renewables states that c ampus projects may scale jump to a nearby area or building on the campus to meet the projects energy needs This
25 means tha t if the necessary amount of energy cannot be produced on site, it is okay to produce renewable energy elsewhere on campus and transport it onto the site. The second exception is not as significant, but it will save money and time during the renovation. Ex ception I06 E8: Sub metering in Existing Buildings states that s ub metering is not required in existing buildings under the renovation typology This will save the project team time and money by skipping over sub meter installation. To truly get an unde calculations regarding current consumption and possible production via a photovoltaic (PV) array. Through these calculations, the necessary size of a PV array to offset 105% of buildin g energy consumption can be determined. Based on electricity consumption data from 2013 2016, the average annual energy consumption of the Lacrosse Locker Room Facility is 503,675 kWh. Therefore, to meet the 105% requirement, the PV array would need to pro duce approximately 530,000 kWh/year. Like the water consumption data, these figures seem incredibly high. n is the Sunmodule SWA 350W XL Mono. 2 and each one costs roughly $550 installed. On average, nominal power. So, an annual demand of 530 ,000 kWh divided by an annual production rate of 1700 kWh per 1 kW means that the array would need to be 312 kW. Each panel is 350W, so it would take 892 panels to make a 312 kW array. 892 panels at $550 each comes out to $490,600.
26 To the naked eye, tha t seems incredibly expensive. However, what is the time frame for return on investment? Currently, the university pays $0.1025 per kWh and the average annual consumption is 503,675 kWh. That means each year, the university is paying a $51,626.69 electric b ill for the Lacrosse Locker Room facility. The new PV array would eliminate that energy bill. The initial cost of $490,600 divided by the annual savings $51,626.69 indicates a tually a fairly sound investment. The solar panels have a 20 year warranty and an expected lifespan of 30 45 years. That means that for a minimum of 10.5 years (but likely much longer), the university would technically be profiting compared to the baseline This data is promising, but there are other things to consider. One of the biggest is space. The area of this array is 19,133.4 ft 2 and that does not account for spacing. Because the building is only 10,712f ft 2 putting panels on the roof alone will not suffice. Therefore, scale jumping will likely come into play. As it was mentioned earlier, this is acceptable under Living Building Challenge Standards, but where would these extra panels go? The most likely solu tion seems to be on a canopy over a parking lot or on another building, but there are external added costs that accompany those solutions. Because of this uncertainty, it is impossible to know exactly how much it would cost to install a system of this magn itude. Thus, Imperative 06 Net Positive
27 Energy is attainable but may not be practical. The practicality of satisfying this imperative will come down to how much the university is willing to spend and where the extra panels will be permitted for install. achieved. Petal 04 Health + Happiness Standard 3.1 Handbook, The intent of the Health + Ha ppiness Petal is to focus on the most important environmental conditions that must be present to create robust, healthy spaces, rather than to address all of the potential ways tha t an interior environment could be compromised. Many developments provide su bstandard conditio ns for health and productivity, and human potential is greatly diminished in these places. By focusing attention on the major pathways of health, we create en vironments designed to optimize our well being. Imperative 07 Civilized Environment The intent of this imperative is to improve occupant health by providing a direct connection to the outdoor environment. This can be accomplished using several strategies including daylighting, operable windows, skylights, etc. To sa tisfy this imperative, every regularly occupied space must have operable windows that provide access to fresh air and daylight.
28 The figure below is an illustrated example of how a building must be designed to ensure that regularly occupied spaces receive adequate daylight and fresh air. With respect to the Lacrosse Locker Room Facility, there are some exceptions that must be taken into consideration. Under Exception I07 E1 11/2009 Special Use Areas certain spaces are exempt from the daylighting and fresh air requirements. The areas included in the list that are locker rooms, mechanical rooms, restrooms, and storage areas. The two biggest exempt areas that should catch the attention of the project manager are locker rooms and restrooms. Because this is a locker room facility, a majority of the floor space is dedicated to locker/changing rooms and restrooms. The other areas that are exempt make up another large portion of the building, leaving just a few small areas that would require operable windows and daylighting. The second
29 Exception is I07 E2 7/2010 Existing Buildings which states that because ILFI understands the limitations of renovation and in the interest of saving building materials, the distance between operable window and workspace is extended from 9 meters to 14 meters. While both exceptions would make the imperative much easier, it would sti ll be difficult and expensive to achieve. The Lacrosse Locker Room does not currently have any operable windows. Meaning that most, if not all the windows would need to be replaced. Furthermore, because of the locker o opportunities for daylighting some areas without removing walls and completely redesigning the building layout. While this would hypothetically be attainable, it is not practical when all things are considered. Imperative 08 Healthy Interior Environmen t The intent of this imperative is to create a healthy interior environment by reducing indoor pollutants and maximizing indoor air quality. To satisfy this imperative, a number of different requirements need to be met. First, the project must comply with the most current version of ASHRAE 62. Second, smoking must be prohibited within the project boundary. Third, the project team must develop an outline of a cleaning protocol that uses cleaning products that comply with the EPA Safer Choice label. Lastly, the project must comply with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Standard Method v1.1 2010. With respect to the Lacrosse Locker Room project, most of these requirements would not be an issue. The building has already met the requirements for ASHRAE 62 when it was certified LEED Gold. Smoking is prohibited everywhere on the University of Florida campus, so that requirement has already been met as well. The locker room facility has also already developed a green cleaning policy to comply with LE ED requirements. Therefore, the existing policy would simply need to be updated to ensure that all chemicals or cleaning products used comply with the EPA Safer
30 Choice label. The toughest requirement to achieve and the only one that puts the feasibility of this imperative into question is compliance with the California Department of Public Health Standard Method v1.1 2010. This requirement requires that all materials used in the building are CDPH certified. Because this is an existing building, any material s that already exist in the building may be left in situ, assuming the building passes the stringent indoor air quality tests. The biggest concern is that although many of the materials used in the building are acceptable under LEED Volatile Organic Compou nd (VOC) requirements, CDPH VOC requirements are much more stringent. Based on the results on the original LEED certification, there should be special concern regarding composite wood and agrifiber products used in the building, as these often result in in creased formaldehyde levels in the building. After the materials list is handed over and air quality testing is complete, any materials that do not meet CDPH standards must be replaced. Therefore, this imperative is hypothetically attainable, but not pract ical as many materials used in the building will not meet CDPH standards. To replace all of them in an effort to improve IAQ would cost an exorbitant amount of money and require a near total building renovation. Imperative 09 Biophilic Environment The i ntent of this imperative is to bridge the gap between the natural and built environment through the incorporation of biophilic design in the project. According to the Health The project must be designed to include elements that nurture the innat e human/nature connection. Each project team must engage in a minimum of one all day exploration of the bio philic design potential for the project. The exploration must result in a biophilic framework and plan for the project Happiness Petal Handbook) The
31 handbook also gives some suggestions for how biophilia may be incorporated into a project. This is illustrated in the graphic below. With respect to the Lacrosse Locker Room renovation project, incorporating biophilia may pr ove to be more difficult than expected. While some aspects of biophilic design are easier to achieve than others, truly incorporating biophilia into the building in any meaningful way may prove to be too expensive for justification. Many of these biophilic design principles are based in architectural design strategies and motifs. To achieve something of this nature, the entire
32 building faade and interior would need a redesign. For the scope of this project, a renovation of this magnitude seems unlikely. Th erefore, this imperative is attainable, but not practical. Petal 05 Materials help create a materials economy that is non toxic, ecologically restorative, transparent, and socially equitabl e. Throughout their life cycle, building materials are responsible for many adverse environme ntal issues, including personal illness, habitat and species loss, pollution, and resource dep letion. The Imperatives in this section aim to remove the worst known offending mater ials and practices and to drive business toward a truly responsible materials economy. Imperative 10 Red List The intent of this imperative is to eliminate the use of some of the most harsh and harmful chemicals and products that are commonly used in construction and renovation projects. By eliminating these products, occupancy health and well being will be signif icantly improved. The red list is one of the cornerstones of the Living Building Challenge Standard. It is also often regarded as the most difficult credit to achieve, simply because so many common materials are prohibited. This includes some of the most c ommon and beloved materials in construction, like PVC, which is the main material us and water supply systems. The full red list can be seen in the graphic below:
33 With respect to existing buildings, and more specifically, the Lacrosse Locker Room renovation project, there is a key exception the makes the red list imperative much easier to achieve. Red List materials ar e allowed when they are left in situ in renovations o r additions in any Typology. In cases where the material is acknowledged as hazardous, such as asbesto s or lead, a remediation expert must advise as to whether it is preferable to remove or encapsulate t he Red List material. Handbook) This means that any red list materials that are already in the building can remain, as long as they are not harmful to human health. During a renovation of the Lacrosse Locker Room, the only materials that would need to adhere to the red list would be anything new that is being added to the building. Furthermore, any red list materials that are temporarily removed from the building as part of the renovation process must be replaced with substitute materials that are not on the red list. This is because any red list material that is in the building must be left in situ and not altered in any way. In general, this exception makes the red list imperative much easier to achieve. Therefore, it is within reason to say that this imperative is attainable, depend upon the scale and budget of the renovation.
34 Imperative 11 Embodied Carbon Footprint The intent of this imperative is to offset the embodied carbon footprint that is created when the building is constructed Every project, big or small, has an embodied carbon footprint that can be calculated through life cycle analysis. This in depth analysis essentially takes every aspect of a project into account including building materials used, manufacturer locations, v ehic le miles traveled, and much more. All this information is assessed and given an estimated ca rbon emissions footprint. All embodied carbon footprint. The purpose of this kind of study is to de termine exactly how much d often into occupancy), so that the developer or the client can make an effort to mitigate those emissions. Under Living Building Challenge Standards, the project must account fo r this carbon footprint, and then make a one time purchase of a carbon offset through a verified carbon offset provider. For new construction projects, 100% of the embodied carbon footprint must be mitigated through a carbon offset purchase. However, in an existing building renovation project, exception I11 E1 8/2008: Renovation offset reduction allows for a reduction of the offset purchase up to 50%. This means that an existing building only needs to mitigate half of their embodied carbon footprint through the purchase of a carbon offset. Calculating the true embodied carbon footprint of the L acrosse Locker Room would be another project in and of itself. Life cycle analyses are often extremely detailed and companies typically hire third party agents to conduct them. However, assumptions can be made about the Based on comparable buildings found online, it can be assumed that the embodied carbon footprint is roughly 500 metric tons. The average offset cost from a typical provider is $18.15 per metric ton. Because the project would only need to offset
35 250 metri c tons, it would cost about $4,537.50 at that rate. Based on the data provided, this imperative is attainable. Whether or not it should be pursued comes down to the project budget. Imperative 12 Responsible Industry The intent of this imperative is to limit the damaging environmental impacts that results from the sourcing of materials that are considered natural resources. These materials include timber products, rock and ston e, metals, and minerals. All these materials are essential to the well being o f the natural world and should be sourced ethically and responsibly when necessary. With respect to the Living Building Challenge, t he project team must advocate for the creation and adoption of third party certified standards for sustainable resource extr action and fair labor practices. For example, all timber products must be certified to Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) 100% labeling standards, or from salvaged materials. Stone products used in the building should be certified or in pursuit of certificat ion by the ANSI Natural Stone Council Standard With respect to existing building renovation projects, and more specifically, the Lacrosse Locker Room facility, there is an exception that makes this imperative easier to satisfy. Wood that is left in situ in buildings that are undergoing renovation does not need to be FSC certified. This means that an y wood that already exists on site from the original construction does not need any type of certification. Therefore, the only wood that needs to be FSC certif ied is any new wood that is brought onto the project site during the renovation. Thus, this imperative should be easily attainable for the Lacrosse Locker Room renovation project. Imperative 13 Living Economy Sourcing The intent of this imperative is es specifically, this imperative focuses on supporting and improving the local economy by strengthening the ties between the community and development. To achieve this local economic
36 stimulus, this imp erative requires that materials and resources be sourced within a certain distance of the project site. The graphic below illustrates the exact amounts of materials that are allowed to come from each range of distance from the project site. The remaining 25% of materials that is not illustrated on this graphic can be sourced from anywhere. By creating these boundaries, the benefits ILFI attempting to foster are two fold. First, they are encouraging stimulus of local and regional companies by forcing developers to purchase their materials and hire consultants from within set distance parameters. In the case of most projects in the United States, most of the materials will have to come from North America. The second benefit of this imperative is a reduction in embodied carbon emissions. By sourcing materials and labor from closer to the project site, there are less emissions attributed to transportation and shipping. With respect to existing buildings, the Materials Petal Handbook states that, elements, exterior envelope, and base building systems are not considere d within the typical
37 scope of a renovation project and should not be tracked for Living Economy Sourcing. This makes achieving this imperative much easier, as the building envelope and base building systems make up a significant part of the project. Furthermore, exception I13 E1 11/2014 states that major renovation projects can track in situ salvaged materials, which may account for up to 10% of the project materials. This g ives renovation projects the leeway to reuse some of the building materials that would otherwise be thrown away, further advancing sustainability and resiliency. In the case of the Lacrosse Locker Room renovation project, this imperative is attainable. Bec ause the envelope and major building systems are not included in the measure, and some in situ materials can remain, there should not be many materials that need replacing for the sole purpose of satisfying this imperative. Imperative 14 Net Positive Was te The intent of this imperative is straightforward to reduce or eliminate waste as much as possible through reduction, recycling, and reuse. To satisfy this imperative the project team needs to develop sustainable and innovative ways to reduce or elimina te waste streams as much as possible for the entire life cycle of the building. This includes the design, construction, operation, and end of life phases. e of the buildings life. For the design phase, the team must show that the durability and resiliency of materials was considered and that recycled or salvaged material was utilized when applicable. For the construction phase, the team must indicate how pro duct usage was optimized and how any waste materials were collected. To prepare of the operation phase, the project team must include a collection plan for consumables and durables. Lastly, for the end of life phase, the project team must provide a plan fo r adaptable reuse of building materials as well as a detailed deconstruction outline. The International Living
38 Future Institute also stipulates that the project must have at least one salvaged material per 500 square meters of building area. Furthermore, t here must be dedicated disposal bins on site for recycling and compost throughout the life cycle of the building. The graphic below illustrates all the required levels of materials diversion for a project. With respect to the Lacrosse Locker Room projec t, diverting this much waste may prove difficult. In the modern day, this level of diversion is possible, but it is quite expensive and requires extensive planning and foresight. The biggest challenge is diverting waste during the renovation process. Const ruction projects produce exorbitant amounts of waste, and all of that must be accounted for. However, that does not mean it is impossible. Preparing the building for occupancy and end of life would not be as difficult, as these waste management plans can b e drafted by a team of experts over a longer period The University of Florida already has a robust recycling program through which they encourage all types of recycling, even composting. With that considered, this imperative should be attainable for the p roject.
39 Petal 06 Equity nsform developments to foster a true, inclusive sense of community that is just and equitable regardless of an indiv background, age, class, race, gender or sexual orientation. A society that embra ces all sectors of humanity and allows the dignity of equal access and fair treatment is a civil ization in the best position to make decisions that protect and restore the natural environment that sustains all of us. Imperative 15 Human Scale + Humane Space The intent of this imperative is to create an environment on the human scale. To achieve this, the project shou ld be dense and focused on benefitting the human rather than the automobile. In the modern world, much of the built environment revolves around the automobile. Enormous highways and roads run through our cities and towns while pedestrians are given a small sliver of concrete off to the side. Sidewalks along are sometimes difficult to find in the typical American suburb. Combatting this problem is no small task and will require decades of intelligent urban planning to revitalize the pedestrian experience in much of our built environment. However, through this imperative, the International Living Future Institute is taking initiative over the issue. To satisfy this imperative, project teams must meet specific requirements to reduce the size of parking lots and other auto centric design features in favor of pedestrian and alternative transportation infrastructure. In the case of existing buildings, achieving this imperative would require a total redesign of the project. In some cases, total demolition would be necessary. The ILFI understands this; Therefore, existing buildings under the renovation typology are exempt from this imperative.
40 Imperative 16 Universal Access to Nature & Place The intent of this imperative is to create a place that is accessible to everyone and provides occupants with access to natural features like fresh air, sunlight, and waterways. This imperative is broken into two key components: Universal access to nature and universal access to place. To satisfy the universal access to place c omponent, the project team must ensure that all aspects of the project, including roads and non building infrastructure, is accessible to everyone, regardless of background, age, and socioeconomic class. One interesting component is that this definition sp ecifically includes the homeless. The second piece of the imperative is universal The project may not block access to, nor diminish the quality of fresh air, sun light and natural waterways for any member of society or adjacent developments. The project must also appropriately address any noise audible to the public. With respect to existing buildings, any projects under the renovation typology are exempt from this impe rative. This is likely due to the fact that once a project is completed for the first time, the natural environment has already been altered. It would be impossible for the project team to avoid interrupting a waterway that was already interrupted by the i nitial project. Therefore, this imperative does not apply to the Lacrosse Locker Room case study and can be skipped. Imperative 17 Equitable Investment private and for profit proj ects contribute to the public good in an amount commensurate with the project and donate half a cent (or more) to a charity of their choosing for each dollar spent on the total
41 cost of the project. The only aspect of total project cost that is not considered in this assessment is the cost of the land. Because the University of Florida is a public land grant institution, any projects on campus are exempt from t his imperative. The logic behind this exemption is that public projects are already designed to benefit the public in some way. While this is not exactly the case with Lacrosse Locker Room as the public does not benefit very much from the development of an athletic locker room, the project is still exempt under Living Building Challenge Standard 3.1. Therefore, this imperative can be skipped without any added cost to the project. Imperative 18 Just Organizations The intent of this imperative is to create a more just and equitable environment where all humans, regardless of demographics, are given the opportunity to succeed. While this may seem impossible to achieve through a building standard, the International Li ving Future Institute has receive for fully disclosing their business strategies and being as transparent as possible. To satisfy this imperative, at least one key member of the project team needs to be employed by a Just organization. Furthermore, the project team is required to send at least 10 program information pamphlets to contractors, sub contractors, or product suppliers in an effort to increase awareness of the Just Label. In terms of this imperatives applicability to the Lacrosse Locker Room Facility, satisfying this imperative would be relatively simple and straightforward. For the duration of the renovation, the project executive would need to ensure that at least one key member of the team is employed by a Just Label organization. The only foreseeable challenge is that Just
42 organizations realize their employees are more valuable to a project team, thus allowing them to charge more than market price fo r a given service. Petal 07 Beauty beauty as a precursor to caring enough to preserve, conserve, and serve the greater g ood. As a society, we are often surrounded by ugly and inhumane physical environments. I f we do not care for our homes, streets, offices, and neighborhoods, then why shoul d we extend care outward to our farms, forests, and fields? When we accept billboards, pa rking lots, freeways, and strip malls as being aesthetically acceptable, in the same breat h we accept clear cuts, factory farms, and strip mines. (3.1 Handbook) Imperative 19 Beauty + Spirit The intent of this impe rative is to ensure the creation of a beautiful building that is deeply rooted in the surrounding community and has a strong sense of place. The building should delight and inspire its occupants with different elements of character and charm. To achieve th is celebration of culture, spirit and place appropriate to its function and meaningfully integrate to survey occupants and other uses regarding their opinions about the project and what they feel should be incorporated to add beauty and culture to the building. Once the survey is completed, the project team must come up with a solution to incorporate th e results. Some possible solutions provided in the Beauty Petal Handbook include: a celebration of art, a celebration of intellectual achievements, or a
43 celebration of the customs, arts, social institutions, and achievements of a particular nation, people, or other social group. With respect to the Lacrosse Locker Room Facility, this imperative is attainable. Because the building is on campus and part of the University of Florida, there is plenty of local art and culture that could be incorporated into the building. If the project team wanted to get creative, they could create a contest where students submit art pieces that abide by given parameters, and the student body could vote on their favorites. Theoretically, cost should not be a big issue for this i mperative. It is not necessary to have fancy, expensive art throughout the building. Therefore, this imperative should be easily satisfied. Imperative 20 Inspiration + Education The intent of this imperative is indicated in the name to inspire and educa te occupants, visitors, and the public by delivering explanatory information about the project in a variety of different ways. The project team and later the building manager must provide people with educational information to anyone who desires it throug h different outlets. The following materials are required for all non residential projects: A Living Building Challenge Case Study. An annual open day for the public. A copy of the Operations and Maintenance Manual. A simple brochure describing the design and environmental features of the project. Interpretive signage that teaches visitors and occupants about the project. An educational website. Creating and distributing these items would not be a problem for the Lacrosse Locker Room renovation project. After all, the project is located on land designated specifically for
44 education. Out of all of the imperatives that have been discussed, this one may be the easiest to achieve. To expose the building to the public even more, the annual day when the building is completely open to the public should coincide with the last home lacrosse game of the season. Many visitors will already be on site to specta te the game, so the building would likely draw much more attention than it would on a normal day. The cost to satisfy this imperative would be very low. The most expensive aspect would likely be printing the brochures and interpretive signage or hiring som eone to build the website both of which are relatively cheap. Overall, this imperative is easily attainable and should not be missed. Other Considerations To fully assess the feasibility of the Living Building Challenge for existing buildings, there are s ome important factors to consider that do not fit cleanly into a specific imperative or section. First, the cost of certification itself is important to consider. The International Living Future Institute breaks down the major charges into two main payment s. The first is the cost of registration, which is $900 for any project, regardless of size or scope. The second fee is for the certification itself, which can rage anywhere from $5 to $15,000 depending on the size and scope of the project, the client, and the desired certification level. It is difficult to assess exactly how much it would cost to certify the Lacrosse Locker Room, but it can be assumed that the pri ce ize and status as a renovation Aside from cost, the International Living Future Institute does some things differently than other organizations that have developed rating systems. Most notably, all Living Building Challenge assessments are made based on actual performance data and on site visits. This is challenging because a building may not perform as well as the pre construction models indicated. To combat this problem, project teams are forced to over compensate with oversized
45 renewable energy and water systems, far superior air q uality, etc. This is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, it often results in the building exceeding the minimum requirements. However, it acts as another challenge for the project team to solve. When attempting the Living Building Challenge, it is impor tant to remember that the rating system is still relatively young. It was first released in 2006, meaning the ILFI has had just over a decade to adjust and improve the standard. Th is should be taken into consideration during the project as the system is im perfect. There are still occasional issues with the system, and ILFI is open to working with project teams to provide clarity and guidance. They are also open to working with teams to tailor the standard (to an extent) to the specifics of a project. Lastl y, although the ILFI and Living Building Challenge is growing and quickly becoming more popular in the industry, it is still relatively uncommon. There are not many LBC certified projects, especially in Florida. The entire state is home to 1 Living Certifi ed building, 1 Petal Certified building, and 4 Net Zero Energy Buildings none of which are on a college campus. These numbers are disappointing, and are evidence for the fact that LBC is extremely difficult and not yet economically viable. If the Universit y were to pursue LBC certification for a building on campus, they would be trailblazers, setting an example for other campuses around the state. Bottom Line: Is Living Building Challenge Feasible at UF? This project carefully assessed all aspects of the I nternational Living Future Institute and the building certification system they prescribe, Living Building Challenge Standard 3.1. After examining the standard through both a holistic and in depth approach, the feasibility of satisfying the requirements of the Living Building Challenge was assessed by using the University of Locker Room Facility as a case study. Based on research, calculations, and
46 some inference, achieving Living Certification for this project is not feasible. While the Place, Water, Materials, Equity, and Beauty Petals are all attainable, the Energy and Health + Happiness Petals caused problems. With respect to the Energy Petal, satisfying the imperative would not be impossible. In fact, based on the calculations provide d in the Energy Petal section, it could be implemented quite easily. The problem with achieving this petal comes down to cost. At near half a million dollars, the University would not be able to justify the initial cost for a building of this magnitude. Al though the ROI period was promising, it would be wise for the University to use their budget for renewables elsewhere on campus. The Health + Happiness Petal is another challenge because satisfying the imperatives would require a near total renovation. Aga in, this is not impossible, but the University would not be willing to spend the money necessary to renovate a building that was constructed less than ten years ago. Despite not being able to achieve Living Certification, both Petal and Net Zero Energy Ce rtifications lie in the realm of possibility. As it was mentioned in the previous paragraph, five of the seven petals are attainable, including water and materials. This would be more than enough to satisfy the requirements for Petal Certification. However should be recommended to the University for review. A project like this would be very expensive and its success is contingent on the Univ willing to spend. Because of the scope of this p roject, there is no way to know exactly how much the renovation would cost. However, one can make the educated assumption that the cost would likely outweigh any benefits that are derived from renovating this building in particular. Extrapolating Results Campus Wide Although the Living Building Challenge Standard 3.1 is not a perfect fit for the Lacrosse Locker Room, the rating system is not doomed on campus and should not be ignored. The
47 University could benefit immensely from pursuing LBC certification on campus. The Living Building Challenge is objectively and categorically superior to any other building rating system on the planet. If the University is truly interested in advancing sustainability on campus to create a greener community, LBC is the next logical step forward. However, certification will not come easy and there will be plenty of challenges that stand in the way. What the University needs to do is weigh the pros and cons of pursuing LBC for a building on campus. On the one hand, a Living Bu ilding would further the image of campus sustainability, create an attraction on campus for the public to visit, and make the University more marketable to prospective students and faculty. On the other hand, a Living Building would be very expensive, a mu ltitude of challenges would arise during design and construction, and having one Living Building on campus creates a demand for more. The last thing the University wants to do is attempt LBC and fail. Or worse, if they succeed but realize it should not be replicated in the future, the demand for Living Buildings on campus will already exist. In summation, it is difficult to envision a scenario where the University does not eventually attempt the Living Building Challenge. However, a few things should be t aken into consideration. While it may cost (significantly) more than a standard project of equivalent scale, the value of a Living Building does not lie in the bottom line. Although these buildings are great for the environment and undoubtedly advance sustainability efforts, the r eal value lies in their connection to the community. A Living Building is an attraction, designed to protect, educate, and inspire its occupants. If the University pursues LBC on campus, it should justify the cost with those reasons, not with the economic savings that accompany net positive utilities. The goal of this project was to analyze the feasibility of LBC in existing buildings on campus. While this is a feasible goal, the University should first pursue certification for a new construction project.
48 W hile it would be more difficult to achieve than renovation certification, the University and the greater Gainesville community will benefit more from a building ded icated entirely to Living Building Challenge. Additionally, the experience of designing and constructing a Living Building from the ground up is immensely valuable and will make it much easier for future project teams to renovate existing buildings to meet the standard. Conclusion In conclusion, the Living Building Challenge prescribed by the In ternational Living Future Institute stands uncontested at the pinnacle of green building rating systems. While it is rightfully touted as the most stringent building standard in the world, the benefits of the system cannot be denied. Buildings that success fully complete the Living Building Challenge and earn Living Certification are some of the most advanced in the world. The International Living Future Institute is paving the way in building design and efficiency and is deserving of praise for their effort s. This project sought to examine the feasibility of using this rigorous standard for the renovation of existing buildings right here on the University of Florida campus. The Lacrosse Locker Room Facility was chosen as a case study and the feasibility of r enovating that building was examined in detail through each imperative. Unfortunately, the Lacrosse Locker Room does not appear to be a good candidate for Living Certification. However, Living Building Challenge still has the potential to be successful on campus. If the University understands the benefits of building o r renovating a building on campus to Living Building standards, the added cost may be more justifiable. There is reason for optimism, though. As the price of renewable energy and sustainable b uilding materials continues to fall, conquering Living Building Challenge will become easier. The green building industry is still in its infancy and there is plenty of room to grow. Eventually, the University will pursue Living Certification for a project on campus. This
49 will signal the beginning of a new era one in which we take the first step towards living in true harmony with the natural world.
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51 Maclay, W. 2014. The New Net Zero: Leading Edge Design and Construction of Homes and Buildings for a Renewable Energy Future. Chelsea Green Publishing. 1 552. rnational Projects of Carbon Neutrality in Buildings. Detail Green Books 1 194. Sustainable UF. et al. 2018. University of Florida. www.sustainable.ufl.edu [accessed April 25 th 2018] Living Building Challenge The Living Future Institute. et al. 2018. International Living Future Institute. https://living future.org [accessed April 25 th 2018] Convery, F., Proville J., Wolfe, D. 2010. Fifteen Insights on the economic analyt ics of habitat exchange at Fort Hood, Texas Environmental Defense Fund. https://www.edf.org/sites/default/files/fifte en_insights_on_fort_hood_habitat_exchange.p df [accessed April 25 th 2018]