Earth Energy Heat Pump Required in U.S. Post Office

The United States Postal Service will install a geothermal heat pump system in its first sustainable post office in Pennsylvania.

COLUMBIA, Maryland, US, 2001-09-10 [] The federal agency is looking for a general contractor to build a green building that can achieve the ‘Certified Platinum Rating’ of the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design criteria set by the U.S. Green Building Council. Among the requirements for the building are structural insulated wall and roof panels, reclaimed hemlock barn siding, recycled steel shingles, energy efficient thermal window systems, insulated translucent sandwich panels and skylights, glass storefront systems, daylighting clerestory, low (or no) VOC interior finish materials, linoleum flooring, recycled tire floor grates, plastic toilet partitions and recycled plastic signage. The mechanical and plumbing systems will include a closed loop vertical geothermal heat pump system, exposed sheet metal ductwork, ultra low flush water closets and waterless urinals, among other features. The estimated value of the contract is almost US$1 million; responses are due by the end of August. The post office will be located in Bushkill Falls. The USPS wants to achieve the LEED platinum rating, and interested contractors must be familiar with USGBC certification, sustainable design construction, renewable and recycled materials, indoor air quality management, construction waste management, and building commissioning. The 6,000 square foot building will be the first ‘green’ post office in the state of Pennsylvania. It will be located on a site that covers three acres of trees, and designed to minimize site disturbance. Site construction involves porous asphalt paving, recycled rubber walks, under ground detention system, storm water management strategies and beneficial landscape design. Electrical systems will include power and energy efficient direct/indirect light distribution, fire alarm system, surface mounted raceways, bollard and site lighting, and individual metering of panels. Several sustainable design strategies will be proposed as alternates to the base design.
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