USI Blog

What is whole-building design?

whole-building-designArchitects, engineers and project management leaders continually strive to find innovative ways to design and produce efficient and environmentally friendly spaces. Whole-Building design treats a building as a single system. Whole-building design has become the gold-standard in creating a sustainable building design that works as a symbiotic system, fostering full integration, seamless workflow, and a better overall at-a-glance perspective of the business for better decision-making and streamlined operations and maintenance.

What Is Whole-Building Design?

Whole-building design is a multi-disciplinary approach to developing a high-performance and “green” friendly building to adhere to modern design ideals. Some of the key players in this dynamic team-oriented project style include:

  • Commissioning agent
  • Project manager
  • Mechanical engineer
  • Construction contractor and inspector
  • Electrical engineer
  • Interior designer
  • Architect
  • Landscape architect and site planner
  • Building operator
  • Building owner
  • Energy consultant
  • Building users

The list reveals that designers consider every aspect of whole-building design, from the first meeting until employees begin using the space for their needs, inside and outside of the building. The strategy “effectively integrates all aspects of site development, building design, construction, and operations and maintenance to minimize resource consumption and environmental impacts.”

What Is a Design Guidance Team?

A design guidance team—architects, engineers and project managers—takes all of the information gathered from the different key parties, such as the energy consultant and the building users, and uses that information to adjust their design for improved building performance, quality and green friendliness.

The whole-building design team explores various building categories, based on feedback from those associated with design, ownership, operations and use of the building, starting with the categories below:

  • Design Objectives: Helps assess the goals and priorities in areas such as accessibility, aesthetics, functionality and productivity.
  • Space Types: Buildings often feature several types of key spaces that include the atrium, auditorium, child care center, main office, reception, mail center, food service, dining, warehouse, loading dock, storage and supplies, and restrooms.

Learn More

For more information about whole building design or to learn about insulation, contact USI online to find a branch near you and get a free quote. USI believes in excellence in every step of the process and ensures timely completion and quality of service, time after time.