User Guide Contents -2-

Documenting Design Intent

Design documents evolve as the project moves through the milestones of programming, design, and construction, into building occupancy and potential future renovations and retrofits.

Design intent documentation is crucial to the post-construction commissioning process (verifying the proper installation, operation, and performance of energy-efficiency features), and it is the essence of communication and contractual obligation between the building owner, architects, engineers, builders, and commissioning agents. And, when buildings change hands the new owners can benefit tremendously from design intent documentation.

Developing a project’s DID is a team effort. Many stakeholders need to be involved, including the building owner, occupants, design team members, facility operator(s), construction manager, and commissioning agents. Typically, one of the team members (e.g. the commissioning agent) takes the lead (on behalf of the owner) on seeing the DID process through to completion.

This Tool helps the user create a DID and a series of derivative reports (in MS-Word and MS-Excel format). Information entered by the user is gathered and organized using an MS-Access database. The Tool comes with importable default design suggestions (called Template Files), but users are encouraged to tailor it to their needs. The Template for energy management in laboratory-type facilities is supported by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Design Guide for Energy-Efficient Laboratories ( Viewing links to the Design Guide requires a web browser (but not an active web connection). A Template for defining projects according to the LEED “green buildings” criterion is also packaged with the Tool.

The Tool works in conjunction with a web site to provide links that efficiently bring the user to more in-depth design assistance resources, provides the most recent version for download, etc.

The Design Intent Tool was developed by the Applications Team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, with primary sponsorship from the California Energy Commission. The California Institute for Energy Efficiency sponsored initial conceptual development of the Tool. Portland Energy Conservation Inc. collaborated on an earlier version of the tool.