After more than 10 years in operation, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation Philip Merrill Environmental Center became the first building in the nation to achieve LEED Platinum rating from the U.S. Green Building Council, and have provided a number of lessons learned from their experiences:
- Too many operable windows are never enough. Lessons started with distribution of natural light and the benefits experienced with natural illumination.
- Plug loads are a big part of energy use. Placing all possible plug-ins on motion sensors largely brought the energy usage down.
- Happier workers equals longer stays. Increased energy usage found that many people worked longer hours than normal.
- Staffing pre-move education on building use is essential. Quite a few staff workers were not sure they were going to like the new space and they are now some of the best supporters.