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BUILDINGS - Smarter Facilities Management

Industry News


Warm weather is already here, and it’s time for facility managers and building owners to review their cleaning programs and planning for spring.  Daily cleaning tasks and deep cleaning initiatives go a long way toward preparing a facility for a new season of occupants and visitors.

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has announced that the 12,000th commercial project has earned LEED certification. Since its launch in 2000, the LEED green building program has transformed the way built environments are designed, constructed, operated and maintained

The National Frame Building Association (NFBA) has successfully tested a post-frame 3-hour fire wall system that can now be incorporated into a post-frame building without having to seek out expensive traditional non-wood framing systems.


The White House has announced up to $35 million over three years to support research and development in advanced biofuels, bioenergy and high-value biobased products.


With everything else on a facility manager’s plate each day, there’s no room to be surprised by data center issues.  How can a facility manager or building owner tackle data center problems before they happen?


Ergonomic enhancements don’t have to mean refurbishing offices with top-of-the-line, executive-level chairs or overhauling the technology set-up. In fact, high-impact ergonomic tweaks often come at a low (or no) cost. Building owners and facility managers can work with companies to promote employee education – spreading awareness of ergonomic best practices and providing tips for optimal equipment use.

A well-built power protection solution, featuring high-quality, highly efficient UPS hardware, can help keep your business applications available, your power costs manageable, and your data safe.  When planning or updating your power protection solution, how do you choose the best UPS for the job?

That’s why planning and deploying a robust power protection solution is an absolutely vital aspect of business continuity. But, any well-designed power protection architecture is incomplete without its central component, which is… you guessed it, an uninterruptible power system, affectionately known in the industry as a “UPS.”


Today, educational facilities and classrooms are more tech savvy than ever. The famous “3 R’s” (reading, writing and ‘rithmetic) – once the domain of books/paper and pencil – are increasingly incorporating technology tools.


How can a fire-safety plan contribute to your ROI?  More than just code compliance, an effective fire safety plan can benefit your bottom line.


Let’s look at the benefits of maintaining a professional, up-to-date fire safety plan and the return on investment for building owners and facility managers.


ASHRAE, the developer of the Building Energy Quotient (bEQ) program, has released details on how the bEQ will work to help building owners and facility managers save energy and make the right choices. The Building Energy Quotient (bEQ) program assigns to buildings an energy usage quotient based on completion of an in-operation assessment that includes an ASHRAE Level I Energy Audit.  A bEQ assessment is designed to provide a wealth of actionable information to improve building performance.


Consequently, corporate offices are increasingly accommodating multiple working populations – full-time workers, part-time workers and remote workers who come to the office on both a scheduled and sporadic basis. But as workforce dynamics change, are physical office spaces keeping pace?


President Obama has launched EV-Everywhere, the second of the Energy Department’s “Clean Energy Grand Challenges”.  This initiative is designed to bring together scientists, engineers, and businesses to make electric vehicles a viable, affordable, and convenient option.  The goal is to make electric vehicles a persuasive choice within the next 10 years.


The Professional Development Center (PDC), a component of the Division of Continuing and Innovative Education (CIE) at The University of Texas at Austin, has announced the launch of a new training program in facility management.


Is solid-state LED lighting the future for street lighting?  If so, the future is now.  The Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) and the City of Seattle will take a look at solid-state street lighting in the Pacific Northwest when they collaborate on a three-night streetlight test in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood March 6 - 8.

School facility managers and building owners should be looking to score high marks in liability prevention and maintenance.  Proper floor care goes far beyond keeping surfaces safe and clean, and includes methods to extend floor life and the proper selection of materials. 

That’s true in all types of businesses, institutions and facilities, whether you work in the education, healthcare, government, commercial, hospitality or industrial sectors. In these highly challenging environments, safety and facilities organizations must be well prepared, equipped with appropriate fire and life-safety systems, and capable of communicating quickly and effectively in the event of an emergency.

Selecting furnishings for educational environments can be challenging. It’s not uncommon for a school’s union lounge to be overflowing with students draped across chairs, couches and floors while a university official tours prospective students, and his or her parents, within same the space.

The American Institute of Architects has announced that the Architecture Billings Index has entered into the positive zone for the third month in a row.  The ABI reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending and can be used as an indicator of construction activity.


Energy Secretary Steven Chu has announced that the Department of Energy will be supporting 142 small businesses across the nation on research projects.  The wide range of projects includes wind turbine development, chemical free approaches to killing bacteria in power plant cooling water, and improving nanomaterials.

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