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Commissioning and handover case study - Edge Hill UniversityJuly 2011

Edge Hill University appointed a specialist consultant to oversee the commissioning and handover of their Faculty of Health building, and also to monitor the production of the operational and maintenance manuals. The specialist had a data link to the building's controls systems to enable the building systems to be monitored and operated.

The building is performing very well. The monitored data is reporting average monthly energy consumption lower than both the good practice benchmark in Energy Consumption Guide 19 Energy Use in Offices and CIBSE TM46 Energy Benchmarks.

Proof of concept? The Faculty of Health at Edge Hill University has an average monthly consumption lower than the Energy Consumption Guide 19 benchmark and the median benchmark in CIBSE TM46. Carbon dioxide emissions are 31 kgCO2/m2 per annum.

There was good co-operation between the commissioning consultant, the services consultant, the main contractor, and the principal sub-contractors. This resulted in a smooth handover and swift resolution of defects.

This project has also benefited from a well-informed client with a good relationship with the design team. The design team for this building have worked on other campus projects, and are working together on new projects.

The arrangement has allowed for lessons learned to be passed on to newer buildings. Issues have been dealt with quickly as the team are still in regular contact with each other.

The metering of Edge Hill has also been effective, which is a great help when judging the performance of a system during and after commissioning. This is a marked difference from many of other Carbon Trust's Low Carbon Building's Programme (LCBP) case studies, where metering was installed to gain BREEAM credits but with little thought put into commissioning them correctly. In many cases the sub-meter readings do not add up to that recorded by the main incoming energy meters.

Relying on BMS readings can lead to even greater disparities, with factors of three between the BMS readings and the sub-meters. Commissioning needs to include a proper reconciliation exercise before any monitoring begins.

BSRIA provides accredited BREEAM assessments as well as commissioning support, including specialist instruments, guides and training.

Construction compliance

Stress-free compliance with Building Regulations, including airtightness, sound insultation and ventilation