The S.C. Bar Conference Center is Green!

1501 Park St.
Columbia, SC 29201

This project is registered with the City of Columbia’s Green Building Incentive Program.

Sustainable Site Features

Site Selection:
When constructing a new building it is more sustainable to build on a previously developed site, rather than impacting virgin green space. The location of the S.C. Bar Conference Center is on a previously developed and abandoned site. By selecting a location that had been previously developed, the S.C. Bar reduced its impact on the environment by reusing existing utilities and infrastructure.
Reduced Development Footprint: Reducing the size of a buildings footprint has significant environmental impact through the reduction of storm water run-off, heat-island effect and the use of valuable green, open space. The S.C. Bar Conference Center was designed to be compact and vertical, reducing the need for a larger site, while maintaining the S.C. Bar’s goals of functionality and design aesthetic.

Alternative Transportation: Preferred parking spaces have been provided for alternative fuel/fuel-efficient vehicles and carpooling staff and visitors to promote a reduction in personal automobile use. This reduces the production of ozone depleting gasses associated with automobile use.

Development Density & Community Connectivity: To further reduce the environmental impact of automobile use and to promote a healthy lifestyle, the S.C. Bar Conference Center is located within walking distance (1/2 mile) of more than 10 basic services. This includes access to more than nine restaurants, four churches, a public library and other convenience services. The S.C. Bar Conference Center is also strategically located in close proximity to the population it serves, the downtown legal community, further promoting walking and other forms of alternative transportation.

Water Efficiency

High-Efficiency Plumbing: Through the use of low-flow, high efficiency water fixtures and dual-flush toilets that reduce the amount of water used per flush, the S.C. Bar Conference Center has established an annual water savings of more than 43 percent over a building of similar size and function.

Innovative Irrigation Strategies: The landscape plan for the S.C. Bar Conference Center was designed to use an increased number of native and/or drought tolerant plant species, therefore reducing water consumption required for irrigation. Of the 14 different species used, all are either native plants or are tolerant of periods of drought likely to occur in South Carolina.

Drip irrigation was exclusively specified within the LEED site boundary in lieu of conventional spray heads, as drip irrigation is most efficient. In addition, controllers that use current weather information and the real-time evapotransporation rates (based on regional weather data) were used to determine the appropriate amount of water needed. Combining this strategy with the efficiency rate of drip irrigation, the LEED irrigation design results in a total reduction of water use of 72 percent over a typical system.

Materials and Resources

Local & Regional Materials: A cooperative effort between the Owner, designer and construction team required the purchase and extraction of materials from regional sites and manufacturers. Not only does this stimulate the local

economy, it also reduces the harmful emissions that are associated with transportation. Items such as tile, carpet, masonry, asphalt and glass were all extracted and manufactured within 500 miles of the project site.

Recycled Content: Many of the building materials used to construct this facility contained significant amounts of recycled content, including: steel, metal, insulation, wall board, carpet and wall coverings. Selecting products that contain high amounts of recycled content reduces the need for processes associated with the manufacturing of new materials. Additionally, the S.C. Bar has instituted a comprehensive recycling plan that provides receptacles on each floor for the convenient recycling of paper, plastic, glass and cardboard.

Construction Waste Management: Throughout the construction process, all waste material was carefully sorted and recycled to divert as much waste as possible from local landfills. More than 80 percent of the material waste generated during construction was successfully diverted through recycling or re-use.

Indoor Environmental Quality

Indoor Air Quality: To ensure the quality of indoor air, high efficiency heating and cooling systems that continuously monitor carbon dioxide levels and provide proper ventilation levels were supplied. Throughout construction, all vents and duct work were sealed to keep contaminants out of the systems prior to occupancy.

Low- or No-Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs): Building materials have long been a source of concern due to their emissions of VOCs, which can cause allergies and other respiratory problems. All paints, sealants, carpets, woods and adhesives used in the construction process contained minimal or no VOCs and exceeded product environmental standards for low emission products.

Controllability of Systems: To ensure occupant comfort, individual offices and gathering spaces were designed to provide occupants with individual control of their thermal environment. Combined with localized lighting and task lighting, occupants are afforded a much more comfortable and customizable working environment, compared to a typical office.

Daylighting & Views: All interior regularly occupied spaces within the S.C. Bar Conference Center have been located with views to the outdoors to allow for maximum natural lighting, or day-lighting. Limiting the need for turning on lights reduces the amount of energy and costs associated with interior lighting requirements.

Energy Efficiency

Optimizing Heating, Cooling and Ventilation: The mechanical systems for the S.C. Bar Conference Center include many energy savings features, including variable air volume control high-efficiency equipment and "smart" controls. Variable speed drives on the fans and pumps slow the motors down to reduce energy when little cooling or heating is required. High efficiency, water-cooled equipment saves energy when outdoor temperatures are very high. Ventilation is reduced when few people are in the building by utilizing demand control ventilation. Carbon dioxide levels are monitored and when these levels are low, the fresh outdoor air intake is decreased to save energy.

Third-Party Building Commissioning: With the purpose of providing ongoing verification that the installed systems are designed, planned, tested, operated and maintained to meet the Owner’s design intentions, the S.C. Bar employed third-party commissioning. Facilities that do not perform as intended consume significantly more resources over the life of the building, while regular monitoring of system performance can decrease repairs, energy usage and maintenance and operations costs.

City of Columbia Green Building Incentive Program (GBIP)
The S.C. Bar Conference Center is the first commercial construction project under the city’s GBIP. To safeguard the environment and our quality of life and encourage responsible development, the City of Columbia recently introduced their Green Building Incentive Program (GBIP). The Green Building Incentive Program, funded by the American Recovery and Investment Act of 2009, provides both financial and other incentives to those who construct buildings to green building program standards.

With a Silver LEED Certification goal, the S.C. Bar will realize more than $20,000 in reimbursements for its sustainable design efforts. These will include savings on plan review and building permit fees, water and sewer tap fees and additional incentive based waivers, up to a maximum of two percent of the total project cost.

Photographs and renderings property of The Boudreaux Group, Inc., Columbia, SC.


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950 Taylor Street, Columbia, South Carolina 29201 | Phone (803) 799-6653 | Fax (803) 799-4118 |