Modeling City Building Stock for Large Scale Energy Efficiency Improvements Using CityBES
Buildings in San Francisco consumed 52% of total primary energy. Improving building energy efficiency is one of the key strategies cities are adopting towards their energy and climate goals. Urban building energy models (UBEM) can support city managers to evaluate and prioritize energy conservation measures for investment and to design effective incentive and rebate programs. This paper introduces methods to develop a standardized dataset of city building stock, and it demonstrates the use of a UBEM tool, City Building Energy Saver (CityBES), for an urban-scale energy retrofit analysis of building stock in the city of San Francisco. CityBES is an open web-based data and computing platform providing city-scale building energy modeling and performance visualization and benchmarking. CityBES utilizes an international standard CityGML to represent the three-dimensional building stock in cities. As an application example, 940 office and retail buildings in six districts of northeast San Francisco were modeled and analyzed with CityBES to evaluate energy savings for five selected measures. The analysis found that replacing existing lighting with LED and adding an air economizer to HVAC systems are cost-effective measures with combined savings per building between 17% to 31%. The CityBES retrofit analysis feature does not require users to have deep knowledge of building systems or building energy models, which helps overcome barriers for city managers and their consultants to adopt UBEM.