The Introduction of Sustainable Strategies and Technology to the US Housing Building Industry: Design, Construction and Performance Analysis of Energy-Efficient Residential Buildings – A Case Study

By Joerg Ruegemer.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Based on the recent emphasis on energy-efficient buildings in the United States, a high demand exists for architects, engineers, developers, builders, and clients to understand the context in which energy efficient design and construction influence the overall energy consumption and costs of a building. This paper describes a research project that focuses on a comprehensive analysis and documentation of an energy-efficient low-income / close to market rate housing development in Park City, Utah, USA. The project consists of 13 single-family residences that will mainly be constructed with Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs). The project will monitor and analyze building cost and construction efficacy of the energy efficient buildings and their components, and compare it to standard constructions in the Northern Utah Cold Climate Zone. The US Department of Energy DOE sponsors the research project as part of a strategy to transform the US housing market towards an energy-efficient, sustainable industry. Part of the strategy is to provide actors of that industry, which are mainly developers, contractors, and builders, with valuable knowledge on how to build energy-efficient houses. Despite comprehensive research in the field of energy-efficient buildings during the last two decades, most of the results have not reached the US architecture/engineering/construction (AEC) industries in the field of residential buildings yet. The paper will report on the project’s progress to analyze the specific building design, materials, components, and construction methods, to evaluate the strategies that will lead to a higher energy-efficiency compared to a traditional building. Obstacles and barriers that occur during the construction period will be comprehensively analyzed and compared to standard construction methods to better understand the resistance of the housing building industry towards new construction methods.

Keywords: Energy-Efficient Housing, Construction Monitoring and Analysis, Construction Methods and Efficacy, Structural Insulated Panels SIPs

The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 6, Issue 2, pp.151-162. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.135MB).

Joerg Ruegemer

Assistant Professor, School of Architecture, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

Joerg Ruegemer graduated with an M.Arch. from the Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles, and a Diplom-Ingenieur Architekt at the University of Applied Sciences in Cologne, Germany. He worked internationally for large architectural firms, including Frank O. Gehry in Los Angeles and Bothe Richter Teherani in Hamburg. Mr. Ruegemer is a licensed architect in Germany / Europe and an Associate Member of the AIA. He has taught at Karlsruhe and Cottbus University of Technology in Germany, where he lead the Department for Architectural Design and CAD, and at the School of Architecture at Florida International University in Miami, Florida, where he served as the Director for Digital Design. He has received numerous awards and scholarships, including the 2009 Professor of the Year Award from the School of Architecture at the University of Utah, and a full scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service. Exhibitions include displays at the Utah Design Award Exhibition in Salt Lake City, the BEA International Gallery in Miami, and the Art Museum of Western Virginia. Among other things, Joerg Ruegemer’s portfolio includes 13 placements in international competitions, 4 built projects, several scholarly publications, and many international lectures on sustainable architectural and urban design, design strategies, and virtual design. Joerg Ruegemer runs his architectural studio in Hamburg, Germany, and Salt Lake City, USA, where he teaches Sustainable Design and Strategies at the School of Architecture at the University of Utah.


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