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Central Oregon Community College enhances technological education with new eco-friendly technology center, glazed with SageGlass

Oregon’s first Earth Advantage Platinum-certified building conserves energy while maximizing daylight and outdoor views

Nov. 19, 2014

A new technology center at Central Oregon Community College is using SageGlass® dynamic glass, a product of Saint-Gobain, to conserve energy, improve student performance and provide an eye-catching architectural showpiece for visitors to the area.

The $12.5 million Redmond Technology Education Center, designed by BBT Architects, is located on a high, flat desert plain with challenging solar exposure. The school installed SageGlass on the eastern, southern and western facades to provide the new classrooms with abundant daylighting and glare control. The school also wanted to employ the latest, cutting-edge building technology in this facility to solve design challenges and save money.

“We evaluated a number of other solar controls like sun shades and mechanized blinds and found that SageGlass was not only the most technologically advanced solution, its premium cost was offset by not having to incur the added cost, complexity and maintenance of using mechanical sun controls,” said Kevin Shaver, project manager at BBT Architects.

In addition to economics, SageGlass’ ability to reduce heat gain from the sun was an important environmental benefit, helping the Center achieve the first Earth Advantage “Commercial Platinum” certified building rating in Central Oregon. Earth Advantage is a LEED-alternative building rating system that recognizes sustainable building practices based on energy, health, land, minerals and water standards.

“SageGlass tinting controls are integrated into the building control system and include manual override. The ability to mitigate solar heat gain will help the school save energy by reducing the HVAC requirements for cooling loads,” Shaver said.

Maximizing daylight and preserving the connection to the outdoors was another reason for using SageGlass. Numerous peer-reviewed studies show that students perform better, feel better and have better attitudes in classrooms with ample sunlight and outdoor views. SageGlass is electronically tintable dynamic glass that darkens or clears automatically in response to the sun’s movements throughout the day while preserving the outdoor views of the Cascade Mountain Range.

The 34,000-square-foot building is a state-of-the-art facility designed to meet modern workforce needs. The Center trains residents for technology-centered careers in fields such as advanced automotive technologies, digital media and nondestructive testing. It is also home to the Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence and Development (CEED), which aims to create and sustain new startup companies.

The Center, which sits across the road from the Redmond Airport, also serves as a “signature building” for the Central Oregon Community College Redmond campus to attract the attention of both prospective students and business leaders entering and leaving the airport.

“Advanced building technologies like SageGlass add to the building’s eye-catching design. We wanted to convey with the design that the Center will be a key asset for regional companies and for individuals strengthening their employment opportunities,” Shaver said.

“The Redmond Technology Education Center is the latest in a long line of secondary- and higher-education institutions that have turned to SageGlass to optimize daylighting and energy savings in the classroom,” said Derek Malmquist, vice president of marketing at SAGE. “Science has provided us with a better understanding of the positive impacts daylighting has on students’ performance in the classroom.  We are seeing more and more architects creatively incorporating natural light into educational facility designs.”

About SageGlass 
SageGlass®, a product of Saint-Gobain, is advanced dynamic glass that can be electronically tinted or cleared to optimize daylight and improve the human experience in buildings. SageGlass manages the sunlight and heat that enter a building, significantly reducing energy consumption while improving people’s comfort and well-being. It can reduce a building’s cooling load by 20% and HVAC requirements up to 30%. It is a smarter, more elegant solution than conventional sun controls such as mechanical window shades, blinds and louvers. With SageGlass you can control sunlight and glare without shades or blinds while maintaining the view and connection to the outdoors. SageGlass is manufactured in Faribault, Minn., in the heart of “the Silicon Valley of the window industry,” and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Saint-Gobain of Paris, the world’s largest building materials company.

About Saint-Gobain in North America
Saint-Gobain has its North American headquarters in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. As the world leader in sustainable habitat, Saint-Gobain is committed to inventing solutions to help professionals and communities around the world build and renovate comfortable, healthy, economical and energy-efficient buildings. The company has more than 250 locations in North America and approximately 15,000 employees. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain reported sales of approximately $6.2 billion in 2014.

Recognized as a 2009 and 2010 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Saint-Gobain earned the 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award, the highest level of recognition for outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. For more information about Saint-Gobain in North America, visit www.saint-gobain-northamerica.com and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.       

About Saint-Gobain
In 2015, Saint-Gobain is celebrating its 350th anniversary, 350 reasons to believe in the future. Backed by its experience and its capacity to continuously innovate, Saint-Gobain, the world leader in the habitat and construction market, designs, manufactures and distributes high-performance and building materials providing innovative solutions to the challenges of growth, energy efficiency and environmental protection. With 2014 sales of $54.6 billion, Saint-Gobain operates in 64 countries and has over 180,000 employees. For more information about Saint-Gobain, visit https://www.saint-gobain.com/en and the twitter account @saintgobain