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Home   Membership   Members Only   Certification   Education   Current Journal   Foundation March 31, 2015


Cause of East Village blast may have been improper use of a gas line
The New York Times
When the manager of Sushi Park, a restaurant in the East Village building that was destroyed March 26 in an explosion and fire, alerted the building's landlord that afternoon to an odor of gas, it was not the first time that people who worked there had been concerned about how gas was flowing into the building. The restaurant's owner, Hyeonil Kim, 59, said in an interview that he had wondered how the apartments upstairs in the five-story building at 121 Second Avenue had been getting hot water and gas for cooking. The only gas line coming into the building had been dedicated to his restaurant, he said.
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IBM, Carnegie Mellon partner on smart building analytics
Carnegie Mellon University recently partnered with IBM to pioneer use of a new cloud-based analytics system for reducing energy and facility operating costs. CMU's Pittsburgh campus will use IBM Building Management Center technology, delivered via the IBM SoftLayer cloud, to monitor thousands of data points from building automation and control systems. The system, prebuilt and delivered as a service, is capable of diagnosing energy management problems and can "proactively trigger corrective actions," according to the announcement.
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Are you waiting for your HVAC equipment to fail?
Energy Manager Today
We talk to many facility managers – and in our case these are managers responsible for tens if not hundreds of small facilities – who lament their official corporate policy of "run to fail," or replacing HVAC equipment only when it breaks. This approach appears to have become the rule rather than the exception in the past few years. The rationale behind this is quite simple: it is based on the perception – emphasis on this word – that it is more cost-effective to keep HVAC equipment as long as possible than it is to replace it "early."
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Water infiltration can cause major problems to a building, first cosmetically, then structurally
New England Real Estate Journal
Facility management has become more complex and demanding than ever. Concerns such as, strategic planning, ergonomics, benchmarking, accessibility, post-occupancy building evaluations, partnering and downsizing continue to devour a facility manager's time. It is little wonder that building leaks do not rate preferential treatment. Inevitably, though, keeping a building safe from water infiltration becomes an important part of every facility manager's duties.
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Steroids for efficiency: Digital solutions for juicing building energy codes
The Energy Collective
Massachusetts recently adopted a new energy code that promises to improve building efficiency. The merits of the new legislation are on display in Boston's current building boom. At construction sites across the city, the latest energy-saving building insulation, ultra-efficient windows and weather sealing technologies can be seen. One glaring shortcoming of code type approaches for driving efficiency is their record of ensuring the proper operation and performance of building systems.
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Are you freezing at work? New studies may boost building comfort
Michael J. Berens
Anyone who has suffered in an overcooled or overheated meeting room for a day or two understands the need for improved thermal comfort. Complaints about poor thermal comfort abound in occupant satisfaction studies. Yet, to date, solutions have proven elusive or only partially satisfactory. New research, though, provides insights into the mechanisms that influence our sense of temperature and how to achieve a more sustainable balance between occupant comfort and building performance.
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Demand in HVAC market to reach $20.4 billion by 2019
Contracting Business
Those in the HVAC business have some good days to look forward to, if a new study from The Freedonia Group Inc. holds true. The report, ran by, said the demand for HVAC equipment in the U.S. will increase 6.8 percent each year until 2019, where it will reach $20.4 billion. The report notes that this is twice the rate of growth of the 2009–2014 period.
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Occupant satisfaction linked to green certification
While most of the focus on green certifications such as LEED and ENERGY STAR is on the cost savings associated with sustainable practices, a new study from DTZ shows that occupants in green certified buildings tend to be more satisfied than those in conventional buildings. The researchers found that buildings with at least one certification averaged a satisfaction score at least seven points higher than uncertified facilities, while those facilities boasting two or more certifications scored even higher.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    No-shadow skyscrapers proposed (Green Building Elements)
European power grids keep lights on through solar eclipse (Reuters)
Are you building for more than 25 years? (David E. Patnaude)
New York's next step in cutting carbon from buildings (Energy Collective)
Study: Solar PV in the built environment could power California nearly 5 times over (Greentech Media)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


AFE Weekly Headlines
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Bianca Gibson, Executive Editor, 469.420.2611   
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Rachel Crosby, AFE Membership and Operations Manager, 571.395.8773

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