Smart Commissioning at the University of British Columbia


The University of BC builds on average 250,000 sq.ft. of new buildings each year. The university has ambitious high performance green building policies targeting comfortable, healthy spaces and high energy performance. UBC’s experience has been that there is a significant performance gap between modelled energy performance and operational energy performance. UBC recognises that there are a number of improvements that can be made during design, construction and commissioning to reduce the performance gap.
Over the past few years UBC has adopted a more comprehensive approach to facilitating the transition of buildings from construction to operation. During this time UBC has gathered information on best practices being used in at peer universities in California. The smart commissioning approach being piloted on our Hebb Laboratory building project will employ these best practices in an attempt to make significant improves to the outcomes from new building commissioning. Areas of focus include:
•    Improving the quality of the Owners Project Requirements
•    Improving the quality of sequences of operation so that BAS programmers can write better quality controls programs
•    Real time monitoring, data collection and reporting throughout commissioning using data analytics software
•    Real time monitoring, data collection and reporting during warranty period using data analytics software
The objective of this presentation is to share what we have learned so far from this data driven approach to commissioning. Future presentations will show the measured outcomes from implementing the approach.



Zach Danyluk
University of British Columbia

Zach is the University of British Columbia’s manager of all building related mechanical control and automation systems.  Previously he was involved with controls and automation systems for the last twenty years, primarily working in the new and retrofit construction and service implementation sides of the industry with Johnson Controls first as a control system designer and later as a lead system specialist with a focus on energy measure implementation.  At UBC Zach see mechanical controls as the best way to  meet the universities aggressive energy efficiency targets and has worked with his team and the stakeholders to achieve and exceed them.

Adam Rohloff
Altura Associates

Adam is a mechanical engineer and energy consultant at Altura. Altura is a mission driven firm dedicated improving the energy, environmental and financial performance of our clients through the built environment. Adam has focused is work in the nexus between building commissioning, controls, and building data analytics, and has helped to develop a unique approach to commissioning known as ‘smart commissioning’ or ‘connected commissioning’, that uses a analytics-driven approach to ensuring the high quality delivery of building capital projects that meets owner’s expectations at construction completion and into operations.