The Hart Senate Office Building, completed in 1982, is the third office structure designed and built to serve the United States Senate. At the direction of the Architect of the Capitol (AOC), KCCT designed a notable energy generation and natural light conservation upgrade for the building. The energy component is centered upon the installation of approximately 30,000 square feet of photovoltaic (PV) panels, or 45% of the total roof area, and produces about 148 kW VDC of electricity, which back feed the building’s air-handlers. Concurrently, the thermal envelop was enhanced by a new IRMA roofing system with ballast composed of heat reflective colored pavers and gravel.
Conservation of the quality of natural light provided by the original skylights was a priority for the AOC as it sought to upgrade all 180 skylights in the building and to increase energy efficiency. The new energy-efficient skylights maintain this quality of illumination which is vital to the interior facing spaces and essential to fully appreciate Alexander Calder’s colossal Mountains and Clouds mobile/stabile sculpture housed in the central atrium.
The Hart is the first PV retrofit project completed by the AOC and one of the largest of any federal building in the Washington area. The combined energy generation/conservation measures represent approximately 274,000 kWh of electricity which is equivalent to the annual energy use of 25 average U.S. households, or 42,000 square feet of energy-efficient office space.
Other team members included Ashe Consultants, MEP; McMullan & Associates, structural; Seal Engineering, waterproofing; LJB, fall protection; Jensen Hughes, fire protection; enVErgie, sustainability; APEX, environmental and U.S. Cost, cost estimating.
Washington DC based KCCT is a multi-disciplinary design firm focused on planning, architecture, and interior design in urban environments. The firm’s unique practice features a regional portfolio of prominent new development, renovations and infrastructure in Washington’s Federal Core, and an international component including fourteen new US Diplomatic facilities and worldwide projects in more than 160 cities.