Cameron Griffith, C.E.M., C.D.S.M., LEED AP
Track G | High Performance Buildings & Communities
Georgia World Congress Center Authority (GWCCA) leaders report that recently completed upgrades on the convention center have reduced annual energy use and the facility’s carbon footprint by 39 percent. Leaders selected Trane through a competitive bid process to help enhance the convention center’s position as a sought-after location for major Atlanta-area events. Leaders wanted to improve lighting, increase the reliability and performance of heating and cooling solutions and reduce the center’s carbon footprint to reflect the authority’s commitment to environmental stewardship.
With 3.9 million square feet under one roof, the convention center operates much like a small city and needs to maintain operations throughout the upgrade process. The Trane/GWCCA facilities team developed an overall plan addressing major business objectives and then conducted an in-depth audit to identify improvement opportunities. The GWCCA funded the improvements through Georgia’s Guaranteed Energy Savings Performance Contracting procurement program, which enabled them to use future energy and operational savings to finance the infrastructure improvements up front.
Upgrades selected based on audit results include a new central plant to provide reliable heating and cooling performance for the next two to three decades. The uniquely designed central plant was completed without the need to demolish walls or the roof or interrupt the event schedule.
The project team also installed LED lighting retrofits – featuring lamps offering 500 percent longer life campus wide to improve illumination and color rendering and enhance visitors’ experience while ensuring the architectural integrity of the facility. A measurement and verification service agreement was implemented after the project completion to help ensure that the building continues to operate perform at optimal levels.