College Planning & Management

MAY 2013

College Planning & Management is the information resource for professionals serving the college and university market. Covering facilities, security, technology and business.

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Upfront Planning In achieving good indoor environmental quality in historic facilities, clear goals must be established early on and then stressed and reexamined throughout the renovation process, according to Baron. "It might be obvious that low-VOC materials should be specified and installed, but changes happen in the construction process," he says. He recalls a recent project for which his fi rm specified a special epoxy flooring with minimal synthetic components. While not a standard offering from the manufacturer, it was available when required. But the flooring subcontractor failed to recognize the product designation, assumed the architect made a mistake in the specification, and planned to use the standard product. "It would have been easy to miss this change, but our construction administration staff caught the oversight and were able to stress that the special-order material must be used," Baron says. "Since our staff understood the goals and intent, we caught what might have seemed like a routine product substitution." Moss recommends across-the-board involvement. "It's best to involve the design and construction team early in the planning process," he says. "The time and effort spent in preplanning and mockups for everything from paint on plaster walls to lighting and windows can minimize surprises and guarantee a successful completed project for the entire design, construction, and client team." He also advises careful consideration of the costs that might be involved. "It's important for campus leaders to consider the additional upfront cost for adding systems that never existed or upgrading an outdated system in the planning of a renovation of an historic facility," Moss says. "While that initial cost will be higher, there will be an eventual payback in better air quality and energy efficiency that should result in lower utility costs. It is important to consider the overall value to the completed project." Of course even when costs are accounted for, renovating older buildings has never been easy. But in an era of high expectations, more attention than ever must be given to the quality of the indoor environment. If proper attention is given to this factor as construction plans are made, however, historic structures can be adapted to meet today's exacting standards. CPM Mark Rowh is a Virginia-based freelance writer specializing in higher education and business topics. Delivering Solutions to Facility Supplies xpedx, a business of International Paper © 2013 MAY 2013 / COLLEGE PLANNING & MANAGEMENT 43

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