Dan Hounsell

Achievement Awards: Shining a Spotlight on Maintenance

Recognizing the recipients of the 2019 Facility Maintenance Decisions Achievement Awards

By Dan Hounsell, Editor-in-Chief  

Maintenance and engineering departments rarely receive recognition for their efforts to ensure facilities are safe, reliable, energy efficient and sustainable. So that’s what the Facility Maintenance Decisions Achievement Awards do. Here are the 2019 award recipients:


Orange County, Fla. The facilities management department made changes to occupied spaces to reduce its facilities’ environmental impact and utilities costs. The department has reduced utilities spending by 15 percent and electricity use by 25 percent in the past eight years.

University of California, San Francisco. The university set a goal of zero waste by 2020. The diversion rate is now 78 percent. Since 2013, the campus has cut its production of landfill garbage from 3,444 metric tons to 1,612 metric tons.

Renovations & Retrofits

University of California, San Francisco. The university developed the Deferred Maintenance and Renewal Program to provide a more effective plan to repair and maintain facilities. The program has helped fund the highest-priority needs, including: fire and life safety upgrades; environmental regulatory requirement upgrades; emergency generator installations; ADA upgrades; and seismic code compliance.

Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. A sustainable campus initiative helped the university develop strategies in the areas of better building, curriculum, engagement, food, people, purchasing, research, transportation and waste. The initiative has improved the indoor environment and comfort, and it has reduced campus electricity use by 17 percent from 2010-2018.

Personnel Management

Western Michigan University. The facilities management department spotlighted employee recognition and safety by focusing on: training for new employees; toolbox talks; annual training; continuing education. As a result, the department has been able to work more efficiently, make progress on initiatives and move toward proactive maintenance.

Pasco County, Fla. To improve trade worker retention, the facilities management department established a skills-based system that evaluates technicians’ skill levels. This program has created opportunities for advancement and allowed the facility team to expand its knowledge. The team also has been able to take a more productive approach to repairs.

Financial Management

Davenport (Iowa) Community School District. Since 2018, the district has completed energy-efficiency measures that include LED lighting, occupancy and vacancy controls, roof insulation, retrocommissioning, building tune-ups, and kitchen hood optimization. As a result, the district has achieved the lowest energy cost per square foot of Iowa public K-12 schools.

The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. The building management team targeted energy efficiency and comfort issues with projects that addressed a 40 percent failure rate among VAV boxes and a building automation system that could not adjust airflow rates based on actual carbon dioxide levels. Initial reports show AHU modifications alone will deliver savings of more than $340,000 per year.

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  posted on 10/11/2019   Article Use Policy

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