ASHRAE Illinois Honors GBA Projects for Engineering Excellence


G/BA’s work at a hotel and a corporate research facility has been honored with the 2015 Excellence in Engineering award by the Illinois Chapter of ASHRAE.

The winning projects resulted in significant energy and cost savings while improving the sites’ environmental sustainability.

The Horsham, PA, facility of ARRIS was originally created as office space, but some 40% of the property (which encompasses about 390,000 square feet total, in four buildings) was eventually converted to dry labs for technology development. The site, which is managed for ARRIS by JLL, supports the work of some 1,000 employees, Beginning in 2011, G/BA analyzed possible energy upgrades, focused on HVAC systems. The upgrade strategy that was ultimately selected included custom air-cooled DC rooftop units, plus supplemental dry coolers to serve lab space. Two of the buildings were upgraded between 2012 and 2014; the remainder are slated to be improved later. Buildings 2 and 3 have displayed similar energy improvements resulting from the changes (17% annual electricity usage reduction for Building 2 in 2014 compared with the 2011 baseline; 16% reduction for Building 3). G/BA staff associated with the project, which was honored for its intelligent and creative approach to HVAC upgrades, included Dan Doyle (principal in charge), Habib Shams, Joel Freeman, Mike Murphy, David Cohen, and John Villani. 

The Hyatt Regency Denver at Colorado Convention Center was recognized for the results of an incremental, comprehensive energy and water conservation program, launched in 2006 with an analysis by G/BA. The 931,875-square-foot property had only been open for a year or so when changes began to be implemented in 2007. Since that time, electricity use is down 26%; gas use is down 13%, and water use is down 39%. The initiative combined capital projects (including improvements in elevator machine room HVAC, laundry facilities, lighting, conversion of fan-powered boxes to VAV boxes, and multiple other changes over time); control strategies (adding many pieces of equipment to the energy management system, implementing important new control strategies for the chiller and boiler plant, and other resets and sequence modifications); and operations and maintenance procedures (for instance, adjusting guest room thermostats upon checkout and changing guest room shower flow rates). G/BA staff associated with the project, honored for its strong results and attention to detail over time, included Al Butkus (principal in charge), David Schaefer, Ann Seidl, Eric Huber, Heather Beaudoin, Chris Jones, and Matt Butkus.

Awards were presented at the ASHRAE Illinois Chapter’s winter party on December 8 at the Metropolitan Club in Chicago’s Willis Tower. Jeff Manders of JLL (formerly on the ARRIS account, now with Zebra) joined the celebration on behalf of JLL/ARRIS; Hyatt Regency Denver’s Shannon Hall and Bryan Hembree traveled to Chicago to receive the award for their facility.

Congratulations to all our team members and their forward-thinking clients!

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