When the City of Sierra Vista designed its new 32,000 square foot library, planners decided to invest $150,000 in order to incorporate extensive energy efficiency measures into the building. Features include a super-insulated building shell, extensive daylighting, task lighting for users, energy-efficient windows, and an efficient HVAC system that includes CO2 monitors to control ventilation requirements.
During its first year of operation, the building consumed 57% less energy than a "standard design." Annual energy savings are worth $60,000, meaning the city realized a 40% rate of return on its energy efficiency investment. The library has a high level of indoor air quality and very low energy use per square foot. The project received an Association of Energy Engineers National Project Award.