GSA retrofits to create integrated, intelligent buildings

The U.S. General Services Administration has announced 50 of its highest energy-consuming buildings will be retrofitted with integrated and intelligent technologies.


The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) has announced 50 of its highest energy consuming buildings will be retrofitted with integrated and intelligent technologies. IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., believes this is an important step toward bringing integrated and intelligent buildings into the mainstream.

In an upcoming report on the integrated and intelligent buildings market, IMS Research forecasts the Americas market for all integrated and intelligent buildings systems will be worth more than $24 billion in 2012. However, only $1.1 billion of this is forecast to be for the highest level of integration of building systems, such as that anticipated in the 50 GSA buildings.

One of the key reasons why the GSA took the decision to retrofit more than 32 million sq ft of real estate with integrated and intelligent building technologies is the expected $15 million in energy efficiency savings annually. The GSA also announced they will be using a central cloud-based platform to deliver the energy savings expected.

William Rhodes, market analyst at IMS Research comments, “To achieve the expected energy efficiency savings the GSA buildings will probably use the integration of building automation with lighting control and energy management. This is becoming the de facto integration platform for many intelligent building systems. Using a cloud platform will help the GSA to adapt energy strategies in the future across their portfolio, cost effectively, from a central location.”

Rhodes continues, “The GSA announcement is a significant step toward promoting the benefits of integrated and intelligent buildings. However, the GSA owns or leases more than 9,600 buildings. The 50 buildings they will retrofit is a large proportion in terms of square feet coverage but is a very small proportion in terms of number of buildings. If successful this project could be the springboard for more systems like this in the future. For the market to gain real momentum, other government agencies and more importantly the private sector will need to follow suit, turning this market from $1 billion to $100 billion.”

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