Building envelope and building science have been integral to architecture for a long time, while over the years building codes, demand for more energy efficient and sustainable buildings, have resulted in buildings, materials, climate, and other factors becoming ever increasingly complex.
Due to this increase in sophistication and specialization around building science, there is value to incorporate a verification and validation process into the project by engaging a Building Envelope Commissioning Provider (BECxP) on the owners’ behalf.
The National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) defines the Building Enclosure Commissioning as “a process utilized to validate that the design and performance of materials, components, assemblies, and systems achieve the objectives and requirements of the owner.”
In action, building envelope commissioning is the process of evaluating the design against a documented set of owners’ project requirements, and then during construction inspecting and testing building components and assemblies to ensure the installed performance of the building enclosure meets or exceeds the minimum performance requirements set forth by the contract documents. Upon completion of the process, the BECxP may facilitate owners’ training to onboard the operations team who will be undertaking the management of the facility, as well as performing a final review, often inclusive of both qualitative and quantitative testing methodologies, which further helps validate that the end product is aligned with the owner’s requirements for success.
Despite the minimum requirements for this service to provide a fundamental level of expertise and understanding due to the highly technical nature of the projects, METAFOR offers a more complex level of expertise and understanding of building enclosures to exceed the BECx standards. Our building envelope commissioning team also has extensive experience acting as engineer of record, and in design assist and integrated project delivery methods to our clients, peers, and the industry including existing building assessment, performance testing, design assist, technical and peer review, field review, contract administration, submittal review, owner training and warranty review services. This ongoing technical development allows for our specialists and engineers to learn from a diversity of other projects and provides the opportunity to leverage knowledge about the entire building envelope life cycle, including how other buildings have deteriorated with age.
Notably, there is no formal industry standard by which we can govern ourselves by.
With this said, as an integral member of the commissioning team, our services that we can provide, in relation to the pursuit of, or outside of sustainability (i.e., ensuring the performance of a building enclosure is verified and documented to meet the owner’s objectives), we efficiently execute the necessary services to fulfill the fundamental and/or enhanced commissioning process (CxP) activities for the building’s enclosure in accordance with:
- LEED v4, Fundamental or Enhanced Commissioning Credits
- ASHRAE Guideline 0–2005
- National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) Guideline 3–2012
- ASTM E2813 – 18 - Standard Practice for Building Enclosure Commissioning
- ASTM E2947-16a - Standard Guide for Building Enclosure Commissioning
Sustainability + Resilience
MTA’s commissioning services offer a unique expertise to projects based on over a decade of work in the North American market. We are recognized as loyal stewards in the industry.
We care about our profession and are active contributors to its viability, serving on boards including the Building Commissioning Association (BCxA), Western Canadian Chapter, and taking an active role in “Technical Talks” and Webinars, as subject matter experts and part of round table discussions. This affiliation and commitment to our industry and profession, not only demonstrates our leadership, but our commitment to the growth and evolution of this emerging field.
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