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Anica Landreneau Explains How Cities Are Passing Legislation to Improve Building Performance

Anica Landreneau HOK

As municipalities seek to limit carbon emissions, more cities are putting in place stringent performance standards for existing buildings.

Excerpted from BuildingGreen:

According to Anica Landreneau, Assoc. AIA, of HOK, there could even eventually be a federal BPS [building performance standard], or at least federal incentives for cities to regulate their existing buildings. Landreneau also serves on the BEPS Task Force for the District.

Landreneau testified about these laws before the House Committee on the Climate Crisis and says that lawmakers are trying to prepare for the possibility of the Green New Deal, collecting information about possible pathways for bringing building performance in line with climate goals. On both sides of the aisle, she noted, “There were no people denying climate change; there was no disagreement there.” Instead, they just wanted to explore what the federal government can do. “It was very refreshing,” she told BuildingGreen.

“We are going to see a lot of investment in existing buildings,” [Cliff Majersik, director of market transformation at the Institute for Market Transformation] said. “It won’t just be about energy” because owners will be taking the opportunity to make lots of other changes at the same time. “This is a huge business opportunity for architects.”

Landreneau agrees. She points to a recent HOK project, 1101 Sixteenth Street (above), as an example of how future renovations would create work for multidisciplinary project teams. The owners started with the goal of energy upgrades in two adjacent buildings—one of which was below the Energy Star median and one of which was above—and ended up with “a major repositioning” involving re-skinning both facades.

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