Indoor Environmental Quality

Did you know that we spend 90% of our time indoors, on average?

Studies show that building occupants work more productively and feel better when proactive measures are taken to improve the indoor air quality.

Requirements: Provide a quality indoor environment for the building occupants by incorporating a number of credit areas in the design and construction:

  • Meet minimum IAQ performance standards
  • Provide environmental tobacco smoke control
  • Incorporate outdoor air delivery monitoring in the building energy management system
  • Design the system to provide increased ventilation
  • Develop and implement a Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan during construction, and inspect for compliance on a weekly basis during construction.
  • Require the use of low-emitting materials - adhesives and sealants; paints and coatings; carpet systems; composite wood and agrifiber
  • Provide indoor chemical and pollutant source control
  • Design and install controllable light systems
  • Design and install controllable systems for thermal comfort, and provide verification after the building has been in operation for at least 6 months
  • Design the building to provide daylighting and views of the exterior for at least 90% of the spaces.

CLU approached this issue proactively during design and construction:

Design features include:

  • Provide views of the exterior and natural daylighting for 90% of the interior spaces.
  • Offices, classrooms, computer labs, and conference rooms have operable windows with screens.
  • Abundant windows have been provided in the spaces to create natural daylighting and views of the exterior for 94% of the spaces.
  • Occupants can control their own thermal environment. Each office and classroom has an individual thermostat with a digital temperature readout. Occupants can adjust their space temperature between 70˚ and 74˚F by using the up and down buttons.
  • Lighting controls are provided for the building using an LC&D Lighting Control System. The classrooms and computer labs have photocell control for daylight harvesting, and an occupancy sensor with override switch. The lobbies and hallways have occupancy sensors and photocells for daylight harvesting. Daylight harvesting refers to the photocell sensing an adequate level of natural light and turning off selected lights in the area. The conference room, seminar room, offices and restrooms have individual occupancy sensor switches in each room.
  • Acoustical sound treatments to reduce and minimize sound transmission office to office, hallway to classroom, and classroom to classroom. The resilient "hat channel" holds drywall off the wood framing and prevent noise transmission, and the red fire caulking around each electrical outlet and wall penetration stops noise from moving through the opening around the box and conduit.

Construction measures implemented through a Construction IAQ Management Plan included:

  • Specifying construction materials that release fewer and less harmful chemical compounds and eliminate the "new building" smell that many people find irritating and trigger allergies.
    • Low-emitting composite woods (plywood, MDF, etc.)
    • Low volatile organic compound (VOCs) adhesives and sealants
    • Interior and exterior paint and building coatings for the roofing system
    • Carpet systems (carpet and adhesives)
  • Protecting air handling systems during construction to keep dust and debris out of the ducts, air system registers and other components. The ceiling mounted fan coil unit in the classroom and the ducts read for installation are protected by plastic wrap to keep them clean inside.
  • Scheduling deliveries and protecting materials that can absorb water (such as drywall and insulation) from moisture. Drywall is stored inside the building during construction to protect it from outside moisture and pollutants.
  • Building interior housekeeping policies enforced during construction
  • Limited building "flushout" prior to occupancy to move outdoor air through the building.
  • No smoking in the building
  • No eating or drinks other than water in the building
  • All areas swept and cleaned on a daily basis
  • All wall and floor cavities cleaned prior to being sealed up
  • Building openings sealed up at the end of the work day to protect adsorptive materials in the interior.

Ongoing Indoor Air Quality measures include:

  • Prohibiting smoking in the building (a campus-wide prohibition).
  • Prohibiting smoking within 25 feet of the building entries, outdoor air intakes and operable windows. Did you know that the City of Thousand Oaks ordinance and CLU policy restricts smoking to outside a 20 foot radius around each building?
  • The building energy management system provides feedback to the Facility, Operations and Planning department on the ventilation system performance, and produces an alarm to alert the operator if the system is not functioning properly.
  • The building commissioning team will perform a building occupant survey after the building has been operational for at least 6 months after occupancy. The team will recommend and implement corrective action as necessary.