ASPIRE is a quarterly magazine published by PCI in cooperation with the associations of the National Concrete Bridge Council. The editorial content focuses on the latest technology and key issues in the Concrete Bridge Industry.
Issue link: http://www.aspiremagazinebyengineers.com/i/297000
36 | ASPIRE , Spring 2013 S U S TA I N A B I L I T Y E nvision,™ a rating system for sustainable infrastr uctur e and dev eloped by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastucture (ISI), was first released for public comment in July 2011. ISI is a non-profit organization founded jointly by the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), the American Public Works Association (APWA), and the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). Shortly after this first public-comment period, the Zofnass Program for Sustainable Infrastructure at Har vard University partnered with ISI to further develop the Envision rating system. Project certification under the Envision rating system began in September 2012. The intent of the Envision rating system is to standardize evaluation of the sustainability of infrastructure projects. It is applicable to projects in sectors such as energy, water, waste, transportation, landscaping, and information. In the transportation sector, project types that can use Envision include airports, roads, highways, railways, public transit facilities, and bridges. Infrastructure is critical to a functioning society. It enables humans to have clean drinking water, travel between our homes and work, and ensures a reliable energy supply. However the earth's resources are not infinite, and thus to maintain sustainable development, w e m u s t a t t e m p t t o r e d u c e n e g a t i v e environmental, economic, and social impacts in infrastructure design. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change defined sustainable development as "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." Similar to other green or sustainability rating systems, credits are grouped in categories related to environmental, social, and economic impacts. A total of 60 credits are distributed across five categories, each of which is explored further in the following sections. Within each credit, point levels are set based on meeting different levels of achievement, and points are weighted within Envision based on the importance of the credit related to overall infrastructure sustainability. An assessor assigned to the project will determine the level of achievement that the project team has reached for each individual credit using a predetermined set of evaluation criteria. The level of achievement for the entire project is determined by the number of points achieved in the different credit categories. Envision levels of achievement include: • Improved • Enhanced • Superior • Conserving • Restorative In the following sections, all credits and their intents are listed. However due to space limitation, only some of the credits to which concrete bridges can contribute are discussed in more detail. Quality of Life (QL) Strategies in this categor y r elate to a project's impact on the community. Broad credit categories include purpose, well being, and community. Table 1 lists the credits in this category and their intents. Two strategies in the Quality of Life category that relate to concrete bridges are explained in more detail in the following sections. QL2.3 Minimize light pollution The metric for this credit is that "lighting meets minimum standards for safety but does Envision Emerges A new way to track bridge sustainability available for owners, project teams by Emily Lorenz table 1–Quality of Life Credits and intents Credit Category Credits Intent Purpose QL1.1 Improve community quality of life Improve the net quality of life of all communities af- fected by the project and mitigate negative impacts to communities QL1.2 Stimulate sustain- able growth and develop- ment Support and stimulate sustainable growth and develop- ment, including improvements in job growth, capacity building, productivity, business attractiveness, and livability QL1.3 Develop local skills and capabilities Expand the knowledge, skills, and capacity of the community workforce to improve their ability to grow and develop Well Being QL2.1 Enhance public health and safety Take into account the health and safety implications of using new materials, technologies, or methodologies above and beyond meeting regulatory requirements QL2.2 Minimize noise and vibration Minimize noise and vibration generated during con- struction and in the operation of the constructed works to maintain and improve community livability QL2.3 Minimize light pollution Prevent excessive glare, light at night, and light direct- ed skyward to conserve energy and reduce obtrusive lighting and excessive glare QL2.4 Improve community mobility and access Locate, design, and construct the project in a way that eases traffc congestion, improves mobility and access, does not promote urban sprawl, and otherwise improves community livability QL2.5 Encourage alterna- tive modes of transporta- tion Improve accessibility to non-motorized transportation and public transit. Promote alternative transportation and reduce congestion QL2.6 Improve site ac- cessibility, safety, and wayfnding Improve user accessibility, safety, and wayfnding of the site and surrounding areas Community QL3.1 Preserve historic and cultural resources Preserve or restore signifcant historical and cultural sites and related resources to preserve and enhance community cultural resources QL3.2 Preserve views and local character Design the project in a way that maintains the local character of the community and does not have nega- tive impacts on community views QL3.3 Enhance public space Improve existing public space including parks, plazas, recreational facilities, or wildlife refuges to enhance community livability AspireBook_Spr13.indb 36 4/1/13 11:02 AM