Project Profile

Project Profile: King County Housing Authority




The King County Housing Authority (KCHA) has provided affordable housing services in the Seattle area since 1939. KCHA decided to consolidate its multiple offices and departments under one roof in 2011.

KCHA purchased a 36,000-square-foot, 1980s retail/warehouse space with the goal to renovate it to meet operational needs. They wanted the building to be extremely energy efficient and the work needed to be completed within the confines of a tight budget. Ecotope, Inc., a local engineering firm, specified our Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) zoning system for the job.

With the help of our VRF zoning system and advanced controls capabilities, KCHA achieved an annual Energy Use Index (EUI) of 26 KBtu/sf/yr in its first year – 70 percent less than the national annual EUI average for office buildings. The building also received an ENERGY STAR® rating of 97, and won second place in ASHRAE’s 2014 Technology Award for Systems Innovation.

“Working with an extremely tight budget, it was a colossal challenge to forge a high-performance building out of an old, worn out retail space,” said Greg Belding, principal at LEED®-accredited Rice Fergus Miller Architects, who designed the space. “We could not have achieved an energy-saving design without the ingenious VRF [zoning] engineering from Mitsubishi Electric. A conventional VAV forced air system would never have worked.”

To learn more about King County Housing Authority’s renovation, click here to read the complete case study.