Building Envelope Design Guide Released

July 7, 2005
NIBS provides advice for the federal government’s institutional and office buildings

Federal agencies have contracted the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) to develop a comprehensive guideline for the exterior building envelope design and construction of institutional and office buildings. The Army Corps of Engineers, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, U.S. Air Force, General Services Administration, Department of Energy, and Federal Emergency Management Agency solicited help from NIBS in creating this uniform set of criteria for the federal government.

The building systems addressed in the guide include below grade, walls, roofing, fenestration, and atria. Each of these systems is addressed in respect to material durability, system maintainability, thermal performance, moisture protection, fire safety, acoustics, and daylighting/visuals (fenestration and atria). Everything from the basics and fundamentals to CAD design and construction details, as well as codes and standards, is included.

To review the comprehensive guideline, visit the Whole Building Design Guide website (

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