DASNY's commitment to New Yorkers is driven by our dedicated and talented workforce. We are enormously thankful for the energy they put into every endeavor. It is their knack for delivering solutions that keeps DASNY and New York State moving ever upward.
DASNY employs a wide range of employees including architects, professional engineers, accountants, attorneys, internal auditors, financial analysts and other professional staff to carry out DASNY's mission.
Learn from DASNY's Professionals
By: Jessica Lansdale, Architect
Imagine going to school, living, or working in a comfortable, modern building with plenty of natural light, no cold drafts and no temperature variations from room to room regardless of the season. Imagine being able to sit next to a window without feeling a chill in the winter or overheated in the summer. Imagine that the building supplies continuous fresh filtered air of superb quality, but doesn’t use a furnace or air conditioner to moderate the temperature. Imagine a building that stays warm with an electric heating unit so tiny its energy demand is 10 percent of what a typical building requires. It probably sounds too good to be true, but this is the norm for buildings constructed to the Passive House standard.
The Passive House standard is an operational energy standard set by the German Passive House Institute or the U.S. based PHIUS, essentially a set of ambitious energy goals met by attentive construction techniques. Passive House techniques create well-ventilated buildings that lose extremely little heat compared to conventional buildings. The standards can be applied to all building typologies--from single-family homes to apartment buildings to factories to skyscrapers. There are no physical limits to the size or building type when building to the Passive House standard.
A passive building is constructed using the following building science techniques:
1. Super insulation: Super thick insulation is used to create an extremely thermally resistant envelope. The insulation is continuous around all sides of the building including the roof and below the slab on grade.
2. An air tight, vapor permeable skin with no thermal bridging: In typical buildings, an enormous amount of heat is lost through leaks and uninsulated materials that move heat or cold through the building envelope. In Passive House level construction, components in the exterior envelope are carefully designed to avoid thermal bridging and air leaks.
3. Thermally-broken windows: Windows have thermally broken frames and triple-glazing to resist heat loss or gain. Unlike double glazed windows with regular frames, the interior face of a passive house window remains at room temperature, no matter what the exterior temperature is. This negates the need for a heating source under the windows. The windows are also acoustically superior to double glazed windows.
4. Building orientation and screening: The building is oriented and screened in order to minimize the sun's energy in cooling seasons.
5. Continuous mechanical ventilation with heat recovery: The Heat Recovery Unit/Exchanger removes heat from exhaust air, and uses it to heat incoming air. The air quality is superb compared to a typical building where a majority of the fresh air is pulled in through leaks in the building envelope.
The passive house movement was popularized in Europe where fuel costs are high. Thousands and thousands of such buildings have already been built. But building to a Passive House Standard is more expensive than traditional construction (5 to 20 percent more) and because fuel costs are low here in the US, the energy savings will take a few years to balance out the additional construction costs. That said, building materials such as triple-glazed windows are readily available now with lower price points and construction professionals are getting trained in passive house techniques. With the advent of stricter building energy codes which include rigorous building commissioning requirements, government agencies are identifying projects that could be designed to Passive House standards. Local government agencies such as the NYC Housing Preservation and Development already require new construction meet rigorous green design standards.
Curtis + Ginsberg, an architectural firm on DASNY’s term list, has designed several sustainable projects including the 11-story Castle Gardens, for which DASNY provided construction administration and reviews. The building offers 114 units of affordable rental housing. Though not following Passive House standards exactly, the building follows the green design standards that are required by the NYC Housing Preservation and Development and it is certified as such through Enterprise Green Communities. The building’s many sustainable features include an extensive green roof that features a rain water harvesting system and allows residents to take advantage of unobstructed views of the Hudson River.
This is just one example of a project where a DASNY project has applied the techniques used in passive building construction. DASNY has the experience and a network of contractors to enable us to provide this sustainable and resilient construction method for clients.
In today’s ever-evolving economic climate, DASNY is providing clients in the way of higher education and health care sectors the tools they need to meet their financing needs. Increasingly, both sectors are building facilities that mix private use with governmental and/or not-for-profit uses. That’s where hybrid financing comes in.
How does it work?
When you issue tax exempt bonds, there are many tax law requirements. One of them is that for the life of a bond issue, the project has to be used for tax exempt purposes. What you’re seeing more frequently now, is colleges adding private-sector retail to residence halls. Hospitals are bringing private practices inside their walls and also adding retail space to their projects. Issuing bonds for facilities that mix for-profit and not-for-profit can be complex as it requires issuing a mix of tax-exempt and taxable bonds.
DASNY has the know-how and experience to issue taxable and tax-exempt bonds for these mixed-use facilities. By working with DASNY on your hybrid financing, we can help you reduce administrative hurdles.
Why do we do it?
In our ongoing mission to provide our clients with speed, certainty and flexibility, hybrid financing delivers all three over the life of the issue.
This approach was used for the largest private client offering in DASNY’s history: More than $800 million in bonds for New York University with $200 million being used to finance NYU School of Medicine’s Langone Science Building. The $829 million issued by DASNY on behalf of NYU was offered as a $582.9 million tax-exempt series and a $246.2 million taxable series.
Why should clients choose DASNY for their hybrid financing needs?
The simplest answer: You can get all your financing needs met through one source, with less hassle. Choosing DASNY is choosing cost-effectiveness, and our professional staff can help you take advantage of the benefits of tax-exempt interest rates. The hybrid model provides the client with flexibility with the tax-exempt tax analysis contributing to a more efficient process.
Hybrid financing provides the best of both worlds. Institutions can still rely on DASNY expertise and maintain flexibility while continuing to focus their attention on providing top-level service at a lower cost of capital.
DASNY Trains Employees to be Compliance Monitors
DASNY has made MWBE contracting and compliance everyone’s responsibility at DASNY by establishing accountability for executing on MWBE contracting at every level of the organization. DASNY has combined the focus on MWBE contracting involvement of DASNY’s Opportunity Programs Group (OPG) with the partnership development know-how of our Procurement Unit.
DASNY now treats MWBE contracting and project delivery as one. Members of the MWBE and Procurement units interact on a daily basis. The change makes MWBE involvement a focus even before a contract is drawn up. It then remains a focus through the life of the contract.
How it works
All of DASNY’s contracts flow through this combined department. The team must approve every MWBE utilization plan for contracts that fall under the law that dictates participation. Before a contract is closed and final payment made, the team reviews actual MWBE participation. It assesses fines if participation falls short of goals.
DASNY provides opportunities for MWBE firms to bid as prime contractors. For MWBE firms that are not prime contractors, we work hard to connect them with those that are. Because of this direct role, the DASNY Team knows which prime contractors need more MWBE firms to meet goals and the types of firms they need.
DASNY’s goal is not only to meet MWBE contract participation goals, but also to help ensure those contracts are executed in an environment that leads to successful outcomes. We have implemented compliance monitoring training so that more than 300 DASNY professionals are equipped to play the role of watchdogs.
The training was developed and deployed by senior leadership at the executive level and within the Construction Division and Counsel’s Office together with teams across DASNY. It ensures that MWBE contracting is everyone’s responsibility and includes the sharing of best practices and compliance measures, the hallmarks of building a robust MWBE program.
DASNY has the ability to share its experience and expertise in diversity programming and compliance monitoring, and offers its MWBE/EEO Consultant Services to clients statewide. These services include, but are not limited to, MWBE compliance monitoring, EEO workforce compliance, supplier diversity programming, community outreach programming, and Surety Bond programming.
New York State has set a high bar with a 30 percent MWBE contracting goal. DASNY surpassed that goal on the New York State Office of Mental Health’s $350 million Bronx Behavioral Center, as well as many other projects.
The combined unit helps ensure this success is replicated across DASNY. MWBE participation is not just the job for Opportunity Programs. It is the job of everyone involved in the contracting process. By focusing on MWBE contracting, DASNY is expanding opportunities for MWBE firms and deepening the service offerings for our clients.
Thirty-three DASNY employees have been trained to implement New York State’s new energy code, which takes effect October 3*. New York is the sixth state to meet the federally certified commercial and residential energy requirements. The training helps create a smooth transition across all DASNY-led projects.
What are the changes?
The new Energy Code recognizes that the building envelope is a significant piece of the energy use puzzle. It is not just about highly efficient heating and cooling systems, power use density and lighting levels. It is about high “R-values”** and continuous insulation, sealing every gap, and understanding how windows and doors affect performance. This also means that communication on detailing will have to improve between designers and contractors.
The Residential Energy Code requires blower door testing to prove the envelope is tight and well-performing. Blower door testing is also a useful tool in commercial buildings, but not required in the code. There will also be more inspections to confirm penetrations are taped and caulked well.
How are we preparing?
“Conquer the Energy Code” training was developed by the Urban Green Council and supported by an almost $1 million NYSERDA funding grant to reach over 5,000 building professionals by the end of 2016. DASNY has several staff that helped to edit this course material and I assisted in delivering the education statewide.
But there is more to it than just training: DASNY professional staff is required to have a complete knowledge of the codes, including having the code standards available, knowing the process changes, and being familiar enough with the code to review and comment on presented projects. DASNY is a Code Compliance entity, and we have many capable reviewers on staff. DASNY design phase managers and reviewers will be addressing the changes on a project by project basis with clients.
Why is the code changing?
With the new code change, New York State moves closer to reaching Governor’s mandate requiring 50 percent of the state’s power to come from renewable sources by 2030.
According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), energy efficiency has become the U.S.’s third-largest electricity resource. A recent ACEEE report demonstrates that efficiency efforts have conserved energy that would otherwise require 313 large power plants to produce. Green Building standards such as the LEED rating system, Living Building Challenge and Passive House are aspirational, and represent an unlimited ceiling of achievement. The floor is about to be raised: Are you ready?
List of DASNY employees who completed training:
Joe Biggins, Architect
Duane Bowman, Architect
Fred Clark, Architect
Peter Johantgen, Architect
William Feigel, Field Representative
Chris Keado, Sr. Architect
Geoff Moore, Architect
Steve Nissen, Engineer
Douglas Page, Engineer
Daljeet Sandhu, Senior Project Manager
Paul St. Pierre, Sr. Architect
Robert Stratton, Regional Project Manager
Wayne Benjamin, Asst. Director, Opportunity Programs Unit
Manuel De Los Santos, Field Representative
James Dunlavey, Architect
Esteban Flores, Sr. Asst. Project Manager
Zohed Jilal, Field Representative
Philip Kump, Asst. Project Manager
Jessica Lansdale, Architect
Yunjung Lee, Sr. Asst. Project Manager
Jose Madrigal, Architect
Tyrone Middleton, Field Representative
Pavindradatt Parasram, Project Manager
Patrick Pierre, Field Representative
Tom Piwinski, Engineer
Maureen Schneider, Project Manager
Ramesh Sharma, Project manager
Shamsul Siddique, Engineer
Wai Tong, Architect
Jaw Chow, Architect
Ed Wagner, Engineer
Jack Martin, Architect
*New York State is also adopting a new uniform code on October 3. You can learn more about that here: (http://www.dos.ny.gov/dcea/)
**The capacity of an insulating material to resist heat flow. The higher the R-value, the greater the insulating power.
By: Christopher Keado, Senior Architect
Long-term capital planning for any institution can be a complex endeavor. It requires expertise and experience to get it done right. DASNY has both and is ready to serve as an extension of your staff to help you through the process.
We’ve recently been working with Buffalo State College to put together an approximately 15-year master plan to help the SUNY campus meet the challenge of a growing student body, and building maintenance and renovation to keep facilities modern and safe.
“DASNY has conducted numerous capital investment projects on the Buffalo State campus,” said Kris Kaufman, Director of Residence Life at Buff State. “As such, we felt it was in our best interest to seek DASNY input as we developed long term housing renovation plans…Projects that are initiated through the plan will transform our student housing into modern, attractive and comfortable accommodations that students and parents expect today.”
The partnership between DASNY and Buffalo State started in May 2015. DASNY started by working with the college as well as SUNY Administration in Albany to determine the funding source. A similar process is undertaken later once a plan is finalized.
DASNY also helped the College select a consultant who was responsible for conducting a wide range of analysis that will help determine the details of this multi-year plan.
This work by the consultant, managed by DASNY, included:
• A Peer Institution Analysis, which examines residence halls at other colleges.
• A Market Study, which takes a look at campus demographics and what kind of off-campus housing is available.
• Focus groups are also held with students to gauge their wants and needs in a residence hall.
• A Demand Analysis is then completed, determining how many beds are necessary for each class, what style they should be, etc.
• A facility review of existing conditions to determine which building features and systems might be in need of an upgrade or replacement.
Once the projects and their priority are determined DASNY, in consultation with the campus, procures a design consulting firm, and bids out the construction phase of the project. Once DASNY executes contracts for the performance of the work and the work begins, DASNY manages the work to ensure everything is code compliant and meets the design parameters.
The first project is already underway: transforming Bishop Hall into a residence hall. Bishop Hall was originally constructed as a dormitory, but since the 1970's it has been used as an academic space. The College is returning it to its original use to meet the growing student body, alleviating the need for putting three students to a room in existing residence halls, Kaufman said. Construction at Bishop Hall started in Summer 2017 and wrapped up in 2018.
Update to LEED System:
The U.S. Green Building Council has updated its LEED rating system in order to continue to drive market change. The new system, LEED v4, took full effect in October 2016 and it encompasses more holistic, systems-based goals that are especially well-suited for campus community and portfolio successes.
Any project registered after the adoption date will need to use this most current rating system.
DASNY is here to help you to meet all of your sustainability goals for the project at hand and in support of your institution-wide intents. The LEED rating system is a strong tool for achievement, providing the assessment, process, and the documentation needed to ensure complete, high-quality work. Our experienced staff can walk you through the changes and what they mean for your planned project.
LEED v4 has more stringent requirements than previous renditions of the system. This means the impressive work being done to achieve your sustainability goals may earn a final rating of LEED Silver under LEED v4, whereas under LEED 2009 you may have earned a LEED Gold rating. The achievement is exceptional and will continue to yield tangible benefits in building performance, operational costs and user comfort.
DASNY is here to help you get the best building project possible within the established budget and schedule while meeting your programmatic and operational needs. Reaching your sustainability, campus and institutional goals is part of this process. Do you want to increase alternative transit? Is there an adopted campus zero net energy vision? Have you defined a campus-wide renewable energy plan? We are here to help you incorporate any of these aspects and more into the design and construction of your new or renovated facility.
DASNY’s policy is to use LEED as a tool for project excellence and we register every new building, addition or significant renovation project with a LEED system and submit for a rating review. This helps us to:
1) Support your sustainability commitments and goals.
2) Support you in complying with all applicable mandates of NYS related to sustainability.
Many New York State laws and executive orders have set goals that are clearly supported by the achievements inherent in green, high performing buildings. LEED helps us to meet these mandates which include references to and goals for green procurement, energy efficiency, renewable energy uptake, increase in EV use and infrastructure. Also included: green buildings, resiliency, adaptation goals for climate change, local foods, protection of pollinators, sustainable landscaping, reduction in coal use…to name a few.
For more information about LEED, click here.