Sustainability In Maintenance Analysis Construction Essay

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It is recognised worldwide that the adaptive reuse of old buildings have environmental sustainability benefits. Conserving and reusing older buildings like the one in this project will definitely reduce energy usage associated with demolition, waste disposal and new construction, and also promotes sustainable development by ensuring that the embodied energy in the existing building is conserve.

The Whole Life Cost Analysis of the building fabric as seen earlier, and ongoing management and use of the building will be considered as part of the conservation process to achieve optimum energy efficiency outcomes. This report will discuss the main options in the building's maintenance that are major contributors to its sustainability, including energy and water reduction in the buildings, and how sustainability practices may be maximised with the new work that is proposed.

The adaptive reuse or retrofitting of the existing building can be more cost effective than building a new facility, while considering the current global economic challenges. Designing the building to accommodate a major restaurant and pool room to include sustainability initiatives reduces operation costs and also environmental impacts, and will therefore increase building resiliency.

The main purposes of sustainability are to avoid the depletion of resources such as energy, water, and raw materials; avoid the environmental degradation caused by facilities and infrastructure throughout their life cycle; and to create a built environment that is livable, comfortable, safe and productive.

Maintenance Issue

Sustainability is the effective and efficient use of resources to ensure that existing reserves can be maintained for as long as possible.

Sustainability improvements to the existing facility will save money over time by reducing the maintenance, operations, and energy costs of the facility. The durability of the building, its equipment and appliances will also be increased. With the rising cost of energy and the reduction in water availability due to global warming around the world, and no reasonable expectation of significantly increased funding for maintenance, it will make considerable sense to take advantage of all the avenues open to reduce future expenses.

Considering the building's maintenance issues during the re-design phase of the facility will contribute greatly to improved working environments, higher productivity, reduced energy and resource costs, and prevented system failures. Building operators and maintenance personnel will be encouraged to participate in the planning and development phase to ensure the best possible maintenance of the building, and also help retain the green criteria designed at the onset of the project. Every aspect of green building possible will be integrated into the maintenance phase of the building's life. Designers will specify materials and systems that simplify and reduce maintenance requirements, such as the new single-ply roof; require less water, energy, and toxic chemicals and cleaners to maintain; and are cost-effective and reduce life-cycle costs. Additionally, design facilities to include meters in order to track the progress of sustainability initiatives, including reductions in energy and water use and waste generation, in the facility and on site.

Creating a sustainable building will start with proper site selection, including consideration of the reuse or rehabilitation of the adaptive building. The location, orientation, and landscaping of the building can affect the local ecosystems, transportation methods, and its energy use. Sitting for physical security is a critical issue in optimizing site design, including locations of access roads, parking, vehicle barriers, and perimeter lighting. For the adaptive reuse of the existing building, site design will integrate with the sustainable design to achieve a successful project.

With the supply of fossil fuel on the decline, concerns for energy independence and security increasing, and the impacts of global climate change arising, it is essential to find ways to reduce load, increase efficiency, and utilize renewable energy resources in this building.

The existing building has been recognised as a significant source of energy consumption. However, the retention of this existing building helps to conserve embodied energy and contributes to a substantial saving in energy consumption through savings in building construction.

Optimising the existing traditional building performance of the structure will assist in achieving energy efficiencies and broader sustainability objectives. Nineteenth and some early twentieth century masonry buildings, for example, have different functional characteristics than more modern buildings with their contemporary moisture barriers, damp-proof courses, membranes, cavity walls and insulation. Maintenance and repairs to the building will assist in ensuring the ongoing significance of the place and improve its longevity. This will contribute to improved energy efficiency and sustainability outcomes. Consideration will also be given to repairing leaking taps, toilets and pipes and other faulty building services in addition to the maintenance of building fabric, from a water conservation perspective.

Thermal Mass will also be considered in optimising the performance of the existing traditional building. Traditional masonry and stone buildings have a high thermal mass. In summer months, the high thermal mass slows the transfer of outdoor heat to the inner cooler surfaces of the building, allowing a comfortable internal temperature. In winter, the high thermal mass building stores the daytime heat from both the sun and any heating system and re-radiates it at night. Proper maintenance planning will ensure that the existing fabric is performing as originally intended, and correctly utilising the thermal mass of the masonry and stone construction, and consequently increase comfort and reduce energy costs. Furthermore, the performance benefits of thermal mass in sustainability terms need to be balanced against the energy consumption required to achieve acceptable thermal comfort at particular times of the year.

Improving the performance of the building envelope by installing a proper cladding and insulation system will save a bundle in energy costs. The importance of adequate insulation in both winter and summer can hardly be overstated. Adding insulation to the building will pay for itself quickly in buildings with significant heating or cooling costs. Insulation immediately increases employee and customer comfort and reduces heating and cooling bills.

Regular maintenance and re-evaluation of the performance of existing heating systems will reduce energy consumption. Overhauling the existing heating systems may be a valuable option if the projected performance outweighs the energy costs associated with the installation of a new system. Hot water systems manufactured before and about 1990 had efficiencies in the range of 56 to 70 percent. Today, standard heating systems have efficiencies of around 80 percent and some systems may be 97 percent efficient, converting nearly all fuel to useful heat. Especially where fuel costs are high, it will be cost effective to replace the old, worn out, inefficient, or significantly oversized boiler with a modern high-efficient model.

Due to global warming, fresh water is an increasingly scarce resource. A sustainable building, through its maintenance plan should reduce, control, and/or treat site runoff, use water efficiently, and reuse or recycle water for on-site use, when feasible. Water sustainability measures will form an important part of the design process for this building. A management plan for monitoring future energy and water consumption in the building will be established, or as part of monitoring future energy and water consumption as a result of new work, will contribute to beneficial energy efficiency and water conservation outcomes.

The plan will include:

retaining, monitoring and comparing energy and water accounts

purchasing green energy

providing public information on energy and water to ensure a holistic effort in increasing energy efficiency awareness as part of the ongoing management of the building.

A sustainable building is constructed of materials that minimise life-cycle environmental impacts such as global warming, resource depletion, and human toxicity. Environmentally preferable materials such as the two-ply roof system have a reduced effect on human health and the environment and contribute to improved worker safety and health, reduced liabilities, reduced disposal costs, and achievement of environmental goals.

Reflective Question

The main purpose of the assignment was the proposed adaptive reuse of a redundant three-storey office block built in the 1970's to a restaurant and bar, while trying to maintain the major historic features. It was important to learn that adaptive reuse is not just about converting a building to other use, but taking into consideration all the constraints and requirements involved, example - planning, building control and fire authority, in the conversion of the building to an alternative use.

There can be many cost advantages to reusing the old office building, such as lower establishment costs. Further, there is little demolition required, no land acquisition, and many of the required utilities such as water and electricity services are already connected and will only need modernization. Also, the structure is already in place so therefore additional savings will be the result.

The decisive factor in choosing an option for adaptive reuse at the early stage of the assignment was the separation of services since my first choice for adaptive reuse was flats. For multiple occupancy in buildings individual and specific service provision would have to be provided which can make assessment difficult. The existing configuration at the existing building would not be suited for the adaption of flats, or could have led to a difficult and costly re-configuration. Certain services such as electricity and telecommunications can be separated or re-routed relatively easily, but plumbing services would typically require extensive work, re-routing through walls, and resulting in major reconstruction work, such as wall breaking, and since this is an old building little interference with the structure is expected. The additional loading on the structure for the additional wall partitioning was also a major factor in choosing the restaurant and bar.


"Sustainable practices are an investment in the future. Through conservation, improved maintainability, recycling, reduction, reuse and other actions and innovations, we can meet today's needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own."

(Douglas, J)

Adapting the 1970 three storey building is a highly sustainable activity. Basic maintenance work to the building was undertaken to keep it wind and water tight, and the structure seems to be in a structural sound condition which made it possible to be adapted for the use of a restaurant and bar. However, the path to the successful adaptation project will be a complex one, risky and highly controlled by regulation, and legal compliance.

With natural resources diminishing and fuel cost rapidly increasing rapidly; predicted changes in weather patterns, the design, construction and whole life use of buildings has never been more difficult. Although there is a significant challenge, there are also opportunities for a whole life sustainable approach to building which can reduce the impact on natural resources; fuel usage and financial and social costs.

Changes in weather patterns in the world today, in particular the increased risks from wind driven rain and flooding, almost certainly provide the greatest challenge to our proposed adaptive building. Technical solutions such as the new single-ply roof system and the refurbishment of the external fabric with an upgraded cladding will help reduce the impact of the resultant damage.