From the inception of our business over 35 years ago, we have emphasized the need to be good stewards of the environments we design with our clients. Our firm has long demonstrated sustainable design practices as a normal course of business on every project we design - long before LEED was established.
Sustainable design is of course, good for people, good for our planet and simply good business practice. This is evident in The Troyer Group's shared values which state:
All that we do with and to the environment must contribute to its maintenance or improvement.
Because we realize the tremendous opportunity and responsibility sustainable design carries, The Troyer Group is a charter member of the Indiana Chapter of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). The Troyer Group has seventeen (and growing) LEED accredited professionals and 28 staff members have been trained in the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™ which is a voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable environments.
The LEED rating system is organized into six environmental categories:
- Sustainable Sites
- Water Efficiency
- Energy & Atmosphere
- Materials & Resources
- Indoor Environmental Quality
- Innovation & Design Process
Even though we may or may not use LEED to rate the finished product, we utilize these criteria to assist us in developing goals and strategies to accomplish sustainability in new or renovated facilities. The following are some of the options that we will consider:
- Orientation of the building on the site and relationship to the sun, views, etc.
- Appropriately calculated overhangs to provide shade / passive heating
- Deciduous shade trees and planting to deter "heat islands"
- Indigenous species selected for water and maintenance savings
- Proper site planning for possible solar panels
- Explore options for low flow fixtures / waterless urinals / composting toilets
- Cisterns for shower water retention can be used for grey water irrigation
- Shower and faucet heads selected to assure water savings and performance
- Low-Maintenance review of each item
- Natural ventilation - passive stack effect cooling opportunities
- Natural lighting - skylights / large windows
- Large shaded porch w/ proper overhang for cooling (summer) / solar gain (winter)
- Solar shingles, solar panels, and other energy generating options to be considered
- Explore ground source heating and other passive and active alternatives
- Efficient lighting fixtures and equipment
- Life-cycle cost analysis and proper selection of mechanical equipment
- Maximize appropriate amount of insulation
- Use Therma Mass when feasible
- Deconstruction, audit and selective reuse of material from existing facilities
- Removal of remaining material to local recycling centers as appropriate
- Wheat board interior paneling and other sustainable material use
- Low-emitting materials selected for increased indoor air quality
- Cement Board exterior siding to decrease maintenance issues and fit in context
- Spray-on water based insulation in walls - doubles as air barrier
- Maximize use of local, regional & renewable resources
- On-site workshop possibilities with client, facility users, and community to explore design options
- Research options for purchasing outside power from sustainable sources
- Size smaller units and program for longer heat up lead time from setback
- Explore passive design options