Massachusetts Breaks Ground on Commonwealth’s First Zero Net Energy Office Building

On December 19, 2012, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and other state and local government officials attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the new field headquarters of the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (MassWildlife).  The $25 million facility in Westborough, Massachusetts will include 45,000 square feet of office, laboratory, and meeting space.  A high-performance building envelope and energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, combined with on-site renewable energy generation, will make the MassWildlife field headquarters the first state-owned zero net energy office building. 
“This project will set a benchmark for energy-efficient office buildings, support many engineering and construction jobs and, once completed, be a great place to work and learn about the conservation of our natural resources,” said Governor Patrick.
The building’s energy needs, compared to those of similar office buildings, have been reduced an estimated 60 percent through the design of a high-performance building envelope and the use of energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, including a closed-loop geothermal well system, radiant ceilings, and outside-air ventilation with heat recovery.  A 294-kilowatt rooftop solar panel array will produce the remainder of the building’s annual energy needs. 
“This building represents another milestone in the Patrick-Murray Administration’s effort to forge a clean energy future for Massachusetts by boldly addressing energy and climate challenges, while committing state government to ‘lead by example,’” said Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Mark Sylvia. “This project is a testament to our state’s design and construction expertise.  It is appropriate that the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, which is tackling climate adaptation issues, is part of the solution through the use of smart design, energy efficiency, and renewable energy at its headquarters.”
The project was selected by Governor Patrick’s Zero Net Energy Buildings (ZNEB) Task Force in 2009 as a demonstration project for zero net energy in a public building. The North Shore Community College (NSCC) in Danvers, Massachusetts completed the first state-owned zero net energy academic building, also as a result of the ZNEB Task Force’s recommendations.  The Task Force, comprised of architects, energy, building, and environmental experts from government, academia, and the private sector, reviewed 80 planned projects at state agencies and higher education campuses that were at various stages of design.
For more information, read the full press release.

Date Posted: 1/15/2013