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LEED Improving on Bridging the Design to Operations Gap


The LEED program in general has become more about existing buildings than new construction as evidenced by the certified square footage of existing buildings recently surpassing certified square footage of new construction projects.  The enhanced commissioning (Cx) and measurement and verification (M&V) credits are examples of good opportunities that tie design and construction to operations in previous and the current version of LEED for New Construction rating system.  As these elements aren’t required to achieve LEED certification, owners should take note and make an effort to pursue these credits, because they are potentially the biggest opportunities to impact long term energy related performance in a building.

The enhanced Cx credit specifically helps to bridge the substantial transition period of a building from the end of design and construction to the operational phase.  Specifically adding Cx activities as described in EA credit 3 of the rating system accounts for opposed season systems testing and generates at least a short track record of operations and performance to analyze and troubleshoot ahead of long term operation.

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