Shaping Tomorrow's Built Environment Today

Renovation Extends Building Life 100 Years

By Eric Solrain, P.E. Associate Member ASHRAE; Tyler Bradshaw, P.E.; Marsha Maytum, FAIA; Gwen Fuertes, AIA

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©2019 This excerpt taken from the article of the same name which appeared in ASHRAE Journal, vol. 61, no. 9, September 2019.

About the Authors
Eric Solrain, P.E., is a senior principal with Integral Group in Oakland. Tyler Bradshaw, P.E., is principal and founder of Blue Forest Engineering in Oakland, Calif. Marsha Maytum, is principal at LEDDY MAYTUM STACY Architects in San Francisco. Gwen Fuertes, is associate at LEDDY MAYTUM STACY Architects in San Francisco.

The transformation of an old U.S. Army warehouse into a new campus for the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) interweaves historic and contemporary. Located at the edge of San Francisco Bay, Pier 2 preserves the industrial integrity of the 62,422 gross square foot (5799 gross square meter) pier shed, integrates advanced sustainable strategies, reuses existing building resources, supports the art institute’s teaching and environmental goals and forges new community connections.

The building now houses a total of 160 studios, workshops, media theaters, flexible teaching spaces and exhibition galleries. All spaces were designed to welcome the public with natural daylight, clean air and thermal comfort.

The evolution of Pier 2 from a military processing point for soldiers and supplies during four wars into an interdisciplinary art campus and community cultural center was a public/private collaboration between SFAI, Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture (FMCAC), and the National Park Service (NPS). The project promotes these cultural and historical values along with economic and environmental values by integrating cost-effective sustainable systems, including a high-efficiency radiant slab, a decoupled HVAC system, a rooftop PV solar array, and an intrinsic daylighting strategy.


Energy Efficiency

This project is a model for sustainable renovation and exceeds the AIA 2030 Commitment target, using 83% less energy than benchmark buildings per the Architecture 2030 Zero Tool.

Thermal Mass. The design relies heavily on the thermal mass of the building’s original structure to resist outside temperature fluctuations and reduce load demands on the inside.

Daylight. Historic windows and the clerestory monitor provide abundant daylight to most of the interior. Post occupancy daylight readings indicate that 71% of regularly occupied spaces receive adequate daylight.

Tempered Ventilation Air. Supplied ventilation air is outdoor air that has been tempered and filtered to optimize indoor air quality and decrease equipment sizes. Exhaust vents are strategically located to remove contaminants where they occur and protect the breathing zone for occupants.

Renewable Energy. Energy bills indicate the space is performing 76% better than modeled and that the PV solar system produces 100% of the required electricity for the building.

The building leverages both existing resources and modern technologies to achieve lofty energy-efficiency goals.


Indoor Air Quality

The building uses both natural and mechanical ventilation to meet ASHRAE Standard 55-2010 and ASHRAE Standard 62.1-2010. A dedicated outdoor air system (DOAS) was integrated to ensure a comfortable and healthy environment throughout the space with low level exhaust where required by the particular art materials being used, user-controlled supply ventilation and low energy destratification fans to ensure even air distribution. Additionally, the building geometry allows air to move freely through rooms without ceilings and curtains while grouped spaces allow for shared air supply.


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