Whole Foods Market Commercial Building Partnerships New Construction

Images

Photo of two engineers looking at a curtain in front of a produce display
Details matter when it comes to saving energy. NREL Senior Engineer II Michael Deru and NREL Mechanical Engineer II Ian Doebber examine the night curtains that cover the refrigerated produce at the Whole Foods Market in Golden, Colorado. Covering open refrigerated cases when the store is closed is a proven energy efficiency strategy.
Credit: Pat Corkery / NREL

General Information

Quick Facts

Location

Raleigh, NC

Operating Hours

7:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Building Type

  • Grocery Store or Food Market
  • Restaurant or Cafeteria

Project Information

Project Owner

Whole Foods Market

Occupant Type

Corporation, for-profit

Whole Foods Market partnered with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop and implement solutions to reduce annual energy consumption in new stores by at least 50% versus requirements set by ASHRAE/ANSI/IESNA Standard 90.1-2004 as part of DOE’s Commercial Building Partnership (CBP) program. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) provided technical expertise

The new Whole Foods Market store in Raleigh, North Carolina, is a single-story 40,000 ft2 standalone store. Although each WFM is unique, this store is representative of other WFM stores, and the energy efficiency measures used here can be deployed to these stores and to other buildings in the U.S. food sales subsector. The construction on this project is complete, and NREL researchers and Whole Foods Market are engaged in monitoring and verifying the performance of the store.

Indoor Spaces

  • Retail food
  • Restrooms
  • Dining

Outdoor Spaces

  • Patio/hardscape
  • Parking

Location Details

Address

8710 Six Forks Road, Raleigh, NC

Site context/setting

Suburban

Occupancy

Owner Occupied

Yes

Owner Type

Corporation, for-profit

Building Hours of Operation

7:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Building Details

Scope

GENERAL FLOOR AREA

Total Gross Floor Area 40,000 ft²

BUILDING

Building unit or complex: Described project is part of a building
Number of Stories 1
Percent New 100%

COMPLETION

DATE OF OCCUPANCY/COMPLETION

March 2011

Architectural Details

ARCHITECTURAL MEASURE USED TO MEET A HIGH-LEVEL OF ENERGY PERFORMANCE

The distribution of skylights was optimized along with associated area lamp selection for daylight controllability. Additionally, the total glazing area was significantly reduced by design for energy efficiency.

Indoor Environment Quality

Indoor Environment

Indoor Environment Issues

Doors on refrigeration cases help make aisles more comfortable
Install side panels on all the exhaust hoods to achieve a lower exhaust flow rate and capture all the exhaust fumes.
Removing heat, moisture and air fumes requires large amounts of air flow - make-up air unit can deliver a large fraction of the required flow at the exhaust hoods
Reduction of glare within the store

Use skylights and/or clerestories for daylighting
Design ventilation system to exchange both heat and humidity between incoming and outgoing air
Ensure that kitchen range hoods exhaust to the outdoors
Provide local exhaust ventilation for rooms with high-emitting sources
Use special equipment for ventilating locations with high heat loads
Keep relative humidity below 60%
Use active dehumidification

Process

Design Process

Energy modeling was an integral part of the design process for the new North Raleigh store.The energy model of the final design was based on Whole Foods Market’s design and construction documents and information shared by the company about its occupant density, plug load diversity, real efficiency curves for HVAC systems, and other factors specific to the operation of its stores.

Design Tools

General Modelling Information

  • EnergyPlus
  • Sensor Placement + Optimization Tool (SPOT)

Lessons Learned

Discuss goals that were met and goals that were not achieved, and the reasons for these outcomes

Carefully commission energy submeters

    Installation, calibration, and documentation of meters proved difficult and challenged measuring, understanding, and optimizing energy by end use.

Use performance-based procurement

    RFPs to manufacturers specified loads and conditions, streamlining identifying and procuring the most efficient HVAC and refrigeration systems.

Involve all players early in the process

    This strategy meant empowered the commissioning agent with detailed building knowledge to catch problems during store commissioning.

Use equipment only as needed

    Automated controls (for kitchen hoods, refrigerated display cases, lighting, etc.) save significant energy.

Place doors on medium-temperature refrigerated cases

    The doors were embraced by customers and saved energy, particularly natural gas for heating.

Finances

Details

Estimated payback time of any investment in measures needed to reach zero net energy

Estimated payback time for this project is less than 5 years.

General Energy

General

Energy Use

This building is predicted to use 41% less energy than a similar building that meets the minimum requirements set by ASHRAE 90.1-2004.

A significant challenge to reaching 50% savings was the large proportion of energy use going to loads such as cooking and refrigeration, which were outside the purview of ASHRAE 90.1-2004. There has historically been less focus on saving energy in those end uses compared to code-regulated items such as envelope, lighting, and heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. The CBP team formulated a set of baseline refrigeration system specifications analogous to ASHRAE 90.1-2004 and used them to generate an energy model to benchmark performance against. Typical equipment used in new Whole Foods Market stores was used to craft the equipment baseline.

Achieve a whole-wall R-value of 15 or greater
Use windows with a whole-unit U-factor less than 0.32 (greater than R-3.0)
Achieve a whole-roof R-value of 25 or greater
Shade south windows with exterior louvers, awnings, or trellises
Use skylights with a low Solar Heat Gain Coefficient
Reduce internal sources of humidity
Use demand-controlled ventilation
Use skylights for daylighting
Design for no more than 1.0 watts/square foot
Use high-efficacy T8 fluorescent lamps
Provide covers for open refrigerated cases, so they can be covered at night
Use waste heat from mechanical systems to heat water

Energy Datasets

Dataset NameYearTypePurchased Energy (kBtu/ft²)
Modeled code baseline2011Base case: ASHRAE 90.1393.00
Final Design2011Simulation303.00
Measured (July 2012 - June 2013)2013Actual--end-use metering291.00

People

Project Team

Hugh Henderson
CDH Energy Corporation
Contractor
Rob Arthur
CTA Architects & Engineers
Contractor
Jim Armer
CTA Architects & Engineers
Contractor
Adam Hirsch
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Other
http://www.nrel.gov
Greg Stark
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Other
http://www.nrel.gov
Jennifer Scheib
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Other
http://www.nrel.gov
Ian Doebber
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Other
http://www.nrel.gov
Eric Bonnema
NREL
Other
Michael Deru
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Other
http://www.nrel.gov
Paul Torcellini
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Other
Mark Kaner
Western Extralite
Other
Justin Hardy
GreenbergFarrow
Other
Mitch Deutsch
GreenbergFarrow
Other
Dean Ochsner
ochsnerEFS, p.c.
Other
Michael Guldenstern
e2s
Other
Kathy Loftus
Whole Foods Market
Global Leader of Sustainable Engineering
Other
Tristam Coffin
Whole Foods Market
Energy and Maintenance Project Manager
Other
Mike Farish
Whole Foods Market
Executive Construction Coordinator
Other
Tom Martone
Whole Foods Market
Design and Development
Other
Rois Langner
Other
Eric Nelson
CTA Architects Engineers
Energy modeling & Refrigeration expertise
Other
Jay Enck
Commissioning and Green Building Solutions, Inc.
Other
http://www.cxgbs.com
Scott Hewett
Whole Foods Market
Energy consultant