Nederland Town Shop
Boulder, CO

Project Description

DMA Engineering was brought into the design team to provide sustainable solutions to the project.  The Owner’s Project Requirement, (OPR) had the goal that the new town shop be net-zero or as close to net-zero as the budget allowed.  The town’s current town shop was close to being condemned and a new town shop was needed.  Town personnel were working in difficult conditions during snow events; however, they were required to keep roads plowed and essential services functioning.  Nederland needed a building that was both functional and met the town’s goals.

The building has 4 overhead doors that allow for vehicles to be pulled in for maintenance and repairs. DMA determined that using a normal heating system would not meet the needs of the design.  We were concerned that using a forced-air system would lose all its capability in the winter when an overhead door was opened to bring a vehicle–as all the air would be evacuated. 

A radiant heating system was chosen as the best technology as it was not susceptible to this limitation.  Overhead heaters provided troublesome as there were clearance issues, so we chose radiant floor heating. This choice provided the advantages of using lower set points to achieve the same heating effect, remained comfortable even when personnel needed to lie on the floor for maintenance, and kept the floor clear of ice and snow.  As no cooling was required, we recommended that radiant heating be used throughout the building. Indoor air quality was achieved using energy recovery ventilators that also reduced overall building loads. 

To determine the best system to provide heating for the building DMA Engineering provided energy modeling of several different technologies and building envelopes.  We performed a total of 10 parametric runs of the energy model which were compiled into a presentation that was presented to the town’s board of trustees.  Based on our presentation and recommendations the town chose a ground source heat pump system using that ASHRAE 90.1-2013 insulation scheme for metal buildings coupled with 10 KW of solar PV offsetting the building’s energy consumption, which will achieve the desired net-zero goal.

DMA Engineering provided the design documents for the mechanical and plumbing systems and assisted the commissioning agent in the acceptance commission.

Kevin Tone, JVA