JCPenney saved over 47 million kWh and $5 million with variable frequency drive retrofits of rooftop units across 131 stores. The case study describes the decision process and results of this successful program.
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On December 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Energy announced the launch of a new partnership to jump-start zero energy schools across the country. The Zero Energy Schools Accelerator enables states and school districts alike to design, construct, and operate these cutting-edge, energy-saving schools. This press release highlights the importance of the Accelerator by featuring a completed zero energy school, Discovery Elementary in Arlington, Virginia.
This 150,000 SF, LEED Gold, Net Zero facility was built on a 17.5 acre site in the city of Irving, Texas. Project cost was $29,610,423, and construction commenced on May 14, 2010. The project opened its doors for school on August 24, 2011. The building is structural steel frame with a brick and metal panel veneer. There are large expanses of windows for daylight harvesting. There are two stories consisting of classrooms, library, cafeteria, auditorium, and gymnasium. The structure fits on a very tight site with building orientation critical to energy conservation; native landscaping and pervious paving round out the exterior. The school uses extensive shading to minimize solar heat gain and incorporates wind turbines as a part of its onsite renewable energy generation portfolio.
Discovery Elementary School in Arlington, Virginia, is one of the first zero energy schools on the east coast. This video tour of the school includes interviews from school officials and the architect responsible for delivering the school on-budget while meeting energy goals. Actual measured data shows that the school has been able to meet the zero energy criteria.
Imagine a school so inviting that students want to come to school. Now imagine this school housed in a beautiful, light-filled building that produces more energy on an annual basis than it uses. Finally, imagine that the district built this school on the same budget as a conventional school, using typical materials, equipment, and tradespeople.
Sound too good to be true? Discovery Elementary School in Arlington, Virginia, is living proof that zero energy (ZE) schools are feasible, affordable, and sensible.