Mining Gold for the Future
CertainTeed’s parent company, Saint-Gobain, the world’s largest building materials company, just completed the expansion of its Research and Development Center in Northboro, MA. In the early stages of the project, I went to Northboro to meet with the architects from Shepley Bulfinch of Boston and David Woodbury, who was in charge of the project for Saint Gobain, to discuss how to best meet Saint Gobain’s environmental directives for energy consumption in the design of this building. Saint Gobain’s corporate sustainability directive is one of the most stringent in the world. It says ‘We will be leaders in energy conservation.”
The architects had never been challenged by a client to incorporate the company’s products while complying with a corporate directive for energy consumption. They did a great job. Shepley Bullfinch was able to integrate 13 Saint-Gobain and CertainTeed products into the design and create the most energy efficient building in Saint-Gobain’s network of nearly 200 facilities throughout North America. This building is not only slated for LEED Gold, which is great, but it is also the state-of-the-art in energy efficiency which is outstanding. Among the products used on this building was CertainTeed’s Flintlastic® FR Cap with CoolStar™, a commercial roofing product with solar reflective properties to maximize energy efficiency. If you want to see the products used on this project visit Northboro.
This building uses much less energy per square foot than a comparable building and exceeds all performance requirements for any energy program in the country.
All new construction projects within Saint Gobain will meet these directives for energy efficiency. The program also applies to existing buildings and those requirements will be phased in over time. It speaks directly to where we want to be in our daily lives with regard to sustainability and energy consumption.
It was exciting to work on this project because it was virtually a blank canvas that enabled technical and building science professionals to take energy efficiency to new levels. As we meet these energy performance mandates for CertainTeed and Saint-Gobain, it will help us work with our customers by sharing what we have learned on our own buildings.
Lucas Hamilton is the Manager of Building Science Applications at CertainTeed Corporation