The UW endeavors to create efficient and sustainable built environments through the thoughtful
balance of investments in infrastructure, buildings, renovations, materials, and maintenance choices. To
this end the UW will strengthen relationships among planners, project architects and engineers, and
facilities/operations to facilitate the discussion and identification of sustainable goals that will achieve
the best performance of UW facilities.
This Buildings and Energy policy is comprised of the following sections:
Energy Target Calculations and Metering
Systems Design and Operation
Tenant Behavior and Engagement
This policy applies to all equipment and facilities owned, managed and occupied by the UW (and clearly
states exceptions as necessary).
This building policy is the result of deliberation by one of three sub-committees (buildings, land use, and
information technology) of ESAC. The building policy sub-committee consisted of representatives from
the Capital Projects Office, Office of Planning & Budgeting, tri-campus Facilities Services, the
Department of Construction Management, Transportation Services, Housing and Food Services,
Environmental Health and Safety, the Department of Architecture, the College of Built Environments’
Integrated Design Laboratory, and students from the Department of Environmental Studies and Program
on the Environment: Resources and Technology.
Energy Target Calculations & Metering: The majority of campus GHG emissions are the result of
activities such as lighting, heating, and equipment-use that can be directly monitored through energy
metering. By installing systems to meter the energy usage of campus buildings, the UW will be able to
understand use patterns and find ways to improve efficiency.
a. The UW shall use a standard unit of measurement and a common protocol when metering and
calculating facilities’ energy-use.2.1-23
b. Facilities Services shall install meters for all energy-related resources (e.g., electricity, steam
heat, natural gas, water and chilled water).2.4
c. Metering devices and/or other methods for the measurement and reporting of electricity, heat,
water, waste, and other resource streams shall be provided and maintained for all new facilities
and major renovations.
Systems Design: To reduce energy-use and GHG emissions, the UW seeks to improve the design of its
buildings. These improvements will neither compromise the UW’s commitment to providing a safe,
healthful place of employment and learning nor its dedication to preserving the historic significance and
aesthetic value of legacy buildings.
New major facilities and major renovations shall:
a. Be designed and built to meet or exceed the performance goals of the Architecture 2030
challenge, which states that such projects shall meet a fossil fuel, GHG-emitting, energy
consumption performance standard of 60% below the regional average as of 2010, with
increasing performance standards that strive for carbon-neutral buildings after 2030.2.5
b. Create performance based indicators that provide educational benefits; are measurable,
objective and actionable; speak to environmental, economic performance; and provide
incentives for continual improvement toward sustainability.
c. Establish energy use goals during the Pre-Design or Schematic Design phase of a project using
the best available information with the most appropriate energy modeling software. Changes
made to the energy use program, after the initial modeling, shall be identified and evaluated to
ensure that actual performance does not fall below the established goals. 2.6,2.7
d. Be efficient in operating utilities infrastructure and reducing green house gas production from
fossil fuel consumption at the Seattle campus central utility plant as quickly and thoroughly as
practical. 2.9
e. Be efficient in building layout and volume to minimize building systems requirements, reduce
energy consumption, and minimize operational and custodial maintenance requirements.2.9
Provide a safe and healthful environment that considers crime prevention, flexible use over
time, ergonomics, building materials content and emissions, natural lighting, indoor air quality
and other qualities. 2.10-2.16
g. Be designed to maximize the use of available site resources and local building materials such
that minimal imported resources are required for the project’s development and operation
including lighting, temperature, ventilation, water, irrigation and other operational conditions.
h. Be designed not to use air conditioning (i.e., environmental cooling), unless necessary for
occupant health or safety or required to meet the programmatic requirements.
Be designed to reduce water use by an agreed-upon percent.2.17
Allow the preservation of a University “legacy” building’s exterior appearance to take
precedence over the achievement of performance goals when the two are mutually
Systems Operation & Tenant Engagement: Although sustainable building design significantly
impacts the UW’s GHG emissions, without sustainable operating procedures and tenant involvement,
the buildings do not reach their full, environmental potential. Daily, the collective occupants of UW
buildings make thousands of decisions that affect the environment. It is of the upmost importance to
establish common, environmentally-friendly practices for building managers to abide by and to engage
building occupants in the University’s commitment to the environment.
All buildings shall:
a. Follow a resource conservation management program established by Facilities Services to
identify, prioritize, and implement cost-effective resource conservation initiatives.2.19, 2.20
b. Designate a sustainability coordinator, a representative acting as a point of contact for
sustainability matters.2.21
c. Divert non-hazardous construction and demolition waste from landfills and/or incinerators by
an agreed-upon percent tracked in tons.2.22
d. Develop and follow an indoor air quality management plan and/or practices that include a
mechanism for occupants to register requests.
e. Operate using the most environmentally-friendly practices possible regarding environmental
control systems, lighting, and appliances and equipment.2.23-2.30
Institute occupant education programs and provide non-technical literature and training so that
building occupants are familiar with efficient energy and water use. This includes providing
operations instructions, signage, and displays to encourage occupants to minimize energy and
water use.
g. Implement sustainable tenant engagement measures (STEMs) to foster sustainable behavior in
their buildings.2.31-2.33
h. Provide sustainability learning-opportunities to University students, during the design,
construction, and operation of facilities.2.34
Encourage tenants occupying and using facilities to use the most environmentally-friendly
practices possible regarding environmental control systems, lighting, and appliances.2.35-2.44
Audience: Policies regarding new buildings and major renovations are directed toward building design
and construction teams. Policies regarding operating and maintaining current buildings are directed
toward building directors and administrators.
Implementation: UW Capital Projects Office, Facilities Services, Environmental Health and Safety, and
the Office of Planning and Budgeting