Project Profile: Energy-efficient technical office center

The Bridgestone Americas Technical Center is 265,000 sq ft of laboratory and office space. A variety of energy-efficiency strategies were designed into the building.

04/25/2014


Project name: Bridgestone Americas Technical Center

Project type: New Construction

Engineering Firm: Lee Good and Associates, Stadelman and Associates, Environmental Design Group

Building type: Office Building

Location: Akron, Ohio

Timeline: April 2010 – April 2012


The Bridgestone Americas Technical Center in Akron, Ohio, showcases sustainable design. All photos courtesy of Firestone Building ProductsBuilding details

The facility is 4 stories high and contains 265,000 sq ft of laboratory and office space. The building houses 450 employees and contains a research laboratory for advanced tire compound testing, prototype, quality control engineering, and other office functions. The Bridgestone Americas Technical Center was built to U.S. Green Building Council LEED Gold specification.  The building features a number of green design strategies including:

  • Vegetated roof
  • Filtered chemical hoods to eliminate chemical exhaust
  • Native plants
  • Stormwater runoff bioswales
  • Cistern for rainwater
  • Natural daylighting
  • Heat transfer heating/cooling system
  • Solar panels
  • Reflective roofing
  • Ultra high efficiency glazing
  • Light sensors.

Project details

A variety of products from Bridgestone America building products division Firestone Building Products and strategic partners were used in helping the facility meet rigid LEED Gold requirements. From roofing and metal wall, to water management and energy, this state of the art testing and engineering facility center took a completely holistic approach to sustainable design. 

SoL Harris/Day Architecture worked along with the engineering teams and manufacturer, Firestone Building Products, to complete the design and construction of the new facility. The engineering teams were in constant collaboration throughout the project with the architect. The building design reflected input from the engineering teams. For example; windows were added or deleted based on comments from the HVAC engineer, glass was tinted based on comments from the HVAC engineer, the building shape was influenced by comments on energy efficiency. 

The engineering teams consisted of the following:

  • Lee Good and Associates, Mechanical Engineer (HVAC, Plumbing, Hoods, Fire Suppression, Lab Gasses)
  • Stadelman and Associates, Electrical Engineer (Power, Lighting, Communications, Security)
  • Environmental Design Group, Site Engineering (Civil Engineering, Landscape Design) 

The building showcases many of products including:

Roofing:  Two layers of 2 in. Firestone ISO 95+ GL mechanically attached insulation with heavy duty screws & insulation plates; Tapered ISO 95+ with saddles and crickets. One layer ½ in. Firestone ISOGARD HD Coverboard installed with I.S.O. Stick insulation adhesive Firestone fully adhered 90-mil RubberGard EcoWhite Platinum EPDM 30-year Firestone Platinum Warranty Vegetative Roofing Tray System and  Paver Walkways. 

Metal Wall: S4500 Aluminum Panel Rainscreen System Flat Lock Stainless Steel Wall Panels UC-600 Aluminum Exposed Fastener Panels UC-500 Aluminum Soffit Panels S200 Aluminum Column Covers Aluminum Sun Screens LS-1 Light Shelves. 

From roofing and walls, to landscape and water management, the Bridgestone Americas Technical Center features sustainable building products from Firestone Building ProductsWater Management:  

  • Vegetative roof: protects roof for longer life; absorbs water and reduces stormwater runoff
  • Rainwater cistern: retains collected roof water for on-site irrigation
  • Bioswales: stormwater runoff soaks the ground and recharges aquifers; reduces runoff to municipal storm sewers 
  • Native plant landscaping. 

Energy:

  • Natural daylighting: all work stations have direct natural light
  • Light sensors: daylighting sensors turn off lights when natural light is plentiful
  • Filtered chemical hoods: eliminate chemical exhaust
  • Heat transfer heating/cooling system
  • Reflective roofing membrane
  • Vegetative roof lessens cooling requirements for the building
  • Ultra high efficiency glazed glass.

Project success

The variable refrigerant flow (VRF) system was used throughout the office area to create a very high efficiency heating and cooling system. The specialized triple pane, thermally broken window system contributes to low glare and high energy efficiency. Re-circulating hoods in the chemistry lab area handled multiple classes of chemicals. This was the first of their kind in the western hemisphere and was a significant contributor to the energy reduction. The building saved 80% on energy compared to the previous facility that Bridgestone inhabited. Rain water is a significant problem in Akron, leading to sewer overflows into the rivers. The engineers found a way to reduce the amount of stormwater that left the site even though the impermeable area increased.



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