News Release — Efficiency Vermont
Feb. 3, 2016
Efficiency Vermont recognizes Gossens Bachman Architects and W.A.R.M.
February 3, 2016 – Montpelier, Vermont – Two Montpelier firms have received Efficiency Vermont’s “Best of the Best” awards for energy efficient construction and renovation. Gossens Bachman Architects received recognition for its innovative design of a new office building, while Weatherization & Renovation of Montpelier (W.A.R.M.) was honored for energy-saving improvements to a Vermont home as well as for notable upgrades to a mixed-use building.
Gossens Bachman Architects’ award-winning design, of a new operations center for Northfield Savings Bank, in Berlin, resulted in a facility using half the energy of a structure built to meet minimum energy-code requirements. Energy needs are kept low by high-performance insulation, extensive use of natural lighting, high-R-value windows, and efficient equipment for heating, water heating, cooling, ventilation, and lighting. Solar panels will meet at least a quarter of the building’s energy needs.
W.A.R.M. received recognition for improvements to a cape-style home that reduced air leakage by 92% and cut annual energy costs by more than $4,000. When W.A.R.M. began work, they found a house so in need of insulation that it couldn’t retain heat. They also discovered that some heating ducts were outside of the house’s insulated barrier and that an improperly vented water heater was releasing gas into the house. To address all issues, W.A.R.M. did extensive air sealing and insulation, moved a portion of the building’s thermal barrier, and conducted a proper water-heater installation.
W.A.R.M. was also honored for upgrades to a Montpelier building that holds both retail and residential rental spaces. The owner had been experiencing high tenant turnover due to the coldness of the building in the winter. Finding that the structure had no insulation, W.A.R.M. installed comprehensive air sealing and insulation. Energy bills are now more than $4,000 lower each year, rooms stay warm, and new tenants have already been in the building nearly twice as long as the typical previous renter.
A total of 13 award recipients were recognized on February 3rd at Efficiency Vermont’s annual Better Buildings by Design conference in Burlington. This is the Northeast’s premier design and construction conference, focusing on building efficiency, durability, and value. More than 1,000 leading building design professionals and construction tradespeople attended.
Given annually, the Best of the Best awards recognize high achievement by architects, engineers, builders, and contractors using energy efficiency and sustainability practices to construct or renovate Vermont buildings. Awards are given for commercial and residential new construction, commercial major rehabilitation projects, renovations completed by Building Performance contractors and home improvements made by Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® contractors.