Brock Center Receives Certificate of Occupancy & Moves into Measurement Phase

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After 3 years of planning, concept development, land acquisition, design, permitting, sustainable material procurement activities and construction, the Brock Environmental Center achieved all of its City of Virginia Beach Certificate of Occupancy inspections on October 17, 2014—the exact day that was scheduled 2 years ago.

brock environmental center at completion

The greenest and most sustainable building in Virginia is now completed and moving into the measurements phase to target full Living Building Challenge certification. Over the next year, the team will work on the final touches that will allow the Center to become a net-zero energy, water and waste facility.

Initial Testing of the Measurement Phase

The next big step in the evolution of the facility is the initial testing phase of the renewable energy sources. The team will fine-tune the functionality of the photovoltaic cells and wind turbines and determine their ability to meet the design requirements of a Living Building Challenge building. Once all of the initial adjustments have been made and the building is using the renewable energy as intended, the 12-month measurement period for the Living Building Challenge will start.

Training the Occupants of the Building

Another very important step in finalizing the ability of the facility to efficiently use its renewable energy sources is properly training the building occupants in the day-to-day operations and measurements of the renewable technologies. The associated systems installers will accomplish this task over the next month, which will then allow the Chesapeake Bay Foundation to effectively occupy and begin working in the building by year-end.

Facilities Management Program in a Mobile App

The facilities management program is another system that will allow the building maintenance managers to properly maintain the systems at their maximum operating capacity. This program was developed by Hourigan Construction and a graduate class of Virginia Tech students over the past 6 months.

The primary function of the program is to provide a mobile app that contains everything you need to know about properly maintaining the facility operating systems, and in a 3D software environment. There are QR codes attached to each room door that can be scanned by an IPad to access a full schematic detail and location of every piece of operating equipment and material in the building. It is truly a library of all critical maintenance data in a mobile app.

Forward Looking

The “unplugging” ceremony for the building will be held on Friday, November 14th with a community day on Sunday, November 16th.

The 12-month measurement period is planned for early 2015 to early 2016 with the expectation that the Living Building Challenge certification would be received by mid-2016.

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