Designing a hospital to meet energy reduction goals starts with focusing on the patient experience. When the building design supports the comfort of the patient, the facilities team is more likely to operate the building as the energy model predicts and the design intends. When patient comfort is ignored, not only is energy use impacted, patient discomfort and stress in the hospital can influence a patient’s well-being and health outcomes, their length of stay, and ultimately their Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems scores.
Intermountain Healthcare has built a culture of support for sustainable strategies among their project managers and leadership. In partnership with HDR’s design team, strategies have been developed to provide comfort while striving to achieve energy reduction goals. Design teams have adopted digital tools to measure characteristics of comfort and wellness, as well as tools that provide early feedback, so the process can be guided by key metrics. One example of such a design is a façade where the peak solar load is kept below a threshold, which can successfully reduce capacity of the mechanical system. When measured on a recent large hospital project, proper façade protection reduced the first costs by $6 per square foot net.
These strategies only work when there is a partnership between owner and design team that supports this type of opportunity. Aggregated strategies can be assembled to deliver designs which achieve remarkable goals, including net-zero energy facilities. The particular strategies will be different for every facility as every hospital project has a unique program and location. This session will describe the strategies for a specific hospital on the pathway to achieving net zero energy operation at its site.