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ASHRAE membership is open to any person associated with heating, ventilation, air conditioning or refrigeration. ASHRAE is unique because its membership is drawn from a wide range of disciplines relating to the HVAC&R field. Over 56,000 individuals from more than 100 nations belong to the Society.

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2017 Student Design Competition:
Utility and Service Life Overview


The purpose of this document is to illustrate the utility rate structures and elements of building life cycle expectancy for the facility to be renovated as part of the system selection and ISBD Design Competitions. This information is also used in the system selection competition for life cycle costing. It should be noted that these rates do not reflect the reality of the actual energy rates in South America; Islands of Diego Ramirez. Regardless, Teams should use the below values for the 2017 Design Competition.



Primary electrical power shall be available to the building and this power will be offered on a Time-of-Day rate structure. The “On Peak” time period shall start at 9:00 AM and end at 7:00 PM Monday through Saturday. On Peak electrical cost shall include a consumption rate of $0.1614/kWh and a demand cost of $9.75/kW. The “Off Peak” time period shall include all other times and the electrical cost during this time period shall be a simple consumption rate of $0.085/kWh.

Propane gas shall be available to the Building and this supply of propane gas shall be charged at a simple consumption rate of $7.91/Mcf. The assumed primary supply of this energy is 75 psig at the entrance to the building property.

Even though the building is on an island, water and sewer service is available. The water rate is a flat consumption rate of $0.02/cubic foot. The sewer rate is also a flat consumption rate of $0.003/gal.

Utility rate structures shall be expected to rise at the following rates of escalation.

  • Electrical cost will rise at the annual rate of 3.5%

  • Propane Gas cost will rise at the annual rate of 3%

  • Water and Sewer will rise at the annual rate of 2.5%

Building Service Life

The Building is considered a “Long Life” service building and therefore is defined by ASHRAE Standard 189.1 (latest addition) to have an expected minimum service life of 50 years. All building decisions related to the building composition, building structural elements, building systems, and building operation shall include a 50 year life cycle study as the building owner expects a sustainable approach to all building design, construction and operational elements. Student teams shall include this basis with all building analysis. To complete the life cycle study, the building owner expects the following elements to be included with any analysis.

  • General Inflation rate for future cost items (replacement items, maintenance and anticipated future costs) will be 3%

  • Owner’s Rate of Return for monetary decisions (this is to be used for bring future costs back to present net worth dollars) will be 4%

  • The Life Cycle Analysis shall illustrate a 50 year study and bring all costs back to a total present value sum for each alternative so the building owner understands in present dollars which alternatives represent the best life cycle value.