UCFs Green Garage Selected for National Energy Competition

It may not look different than most parking garages, but UCFs green parking structure is reducing energy costs and helping to fight climate change.
epanews.jpgArmed with energy-efficient lighting, the garage is a competitor in this years national Battle of the Buildings, sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Parking Garage C is one of 245 buildings selected for the EPAs ENERGY STAR National Building Competition and is the only stand-alone parking structure to take part in the two-year-old competition. The garage is located on the east side of UCFs main campus, near Classroom Building I.

We believe its important to be proactive in reducing energy consumption and demonstrating our commitment to campus sustainability, said Kris Singh, director of UCF Parking and Transportation Services. Garage C is the first of its kind in the competition and a good starting point to implement further green initiatives in other structures at UCF.

The competition compares buildings energy use between two yearlong periods by measuring their energy use intensity (EUI), which represents the energy consumed by a building relative to its size.

The winning building will be the one that demonstrates the greatest percentage-based reduction in EUI from Sept. 1, 2010, through Aug. 31, 2011.

Participants in this years contest include hotels, museums and schools. Theyll be narrowed in June to 14 finalists with the most energy savings. A final winner will be announced in November.

For the competition, participants are measuring their buildings monthly energy use, making improvements to their structures energy performance and tracking their progress.

At UCF, the Department of Sustainability & Energy Management is working with Parking and Transportation Services to make Garage C as efficient as possible by performing retrofits of older equipment.

The garage minimized its energy consumption by nearly 60 percent in 2010, with a 15 percent reduction to its EUI.

All of the garages interior lights were replaced with T5 fluorescent bulbs that use less energy and improve light quality. Timers and light sensors also were installed.

Our participation in the EPAs competition reaffirms our commitment to promoting energy savings at UCF, said David Norvell, UCFs director of Sustainability & Energy Management. In addition to the chance to compete, the program challenges us to investigate new ways to reduce our energy consumption.

According to the EPA, commercial buildings account for almost a fifth of U.S. energy use and greenhouse-gas emissions at a cost of more than $100 billion a year. An average of 30 percent of energy used by commercial properties is wasted, the agency says.

UCF is taking steps to become more energy efficient every day. UCF requires its new buildings to be LEED certified, and existing buildings are being renovated with sustainability in mind. Energy-efficient lighting fixtures are being installed throughout the campus. Departments across campus also teach students and faculty and staff members how to reduce consumption.
UCF Parking and Transportation Services
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