Pie Staff Published in The Construction Specifier


Arvada, Colorado (January 16, 2013)– Stuart Mitchell, P.E., and Jeff Crowe, P.E., recently co-authored an article published in the December 2012 issue of The Construction Specifier, a publication of the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) (Note: The article is located on page 44. You can access this easily by clicking the “contents” folder icon on the left side and and then the “features” link, which will give you a drop-down of each article. Stuart’s and Jeff’s article is entitled – ASTM E2813 and the Owner’s Project Requirements). In the article, titled ASTM E2813 and the Owner’s Project Requirements, Mitchell and Crowe lend expertise on the advantages of implementing a building enclosure commissioning process (BECx), specific to the Owner’s Project Requirements (OPR), for large-scale construction projects through the use of ASTM E2813.


The OPR are established for most large-scale design-construction projects as a way to define the performance criteria for the building as a whole.

Factors of consideration in developing OPR for any given project can include:

  • Energy consumption
  • Environment
  • Safety
  • Security
  • Durability
  • Operation
  • Budget

Each OPR consideration can impact the others, creating a complex process of how a project is engineered and ultimately completed. This increased complexity can be extremely time-consuming in ensuring proper performance test standards are specified and that building codes and OPR’s are satisfied.

The recently published ASTM E2813 Standard Practice for Building Enclosure Commissioning works to streamline the process of establishing the OPR and provide a clear path to accomplishing each phase of the project to satisfy the building enclosure-related requirements of the OPR.

“The value of ASTM E2813 is significant; this document is essentially a vehicle for combining existing requirements from dozens of test standards covering a variety of building enclosure elements, as well as ASHRAE Guideline 0 The Commissioning Process and NIBS Guideline 3 Building Enclosure Commissioning Process BECx.  Similarly, the various design, performance and operational requirements covering the elements which comprise the building enclosure can be combined into a single Specification Section that reference ASTM E2813.” – Stuart Mitchell, P.E.

Why BECx?

Over the past decade or so, the construction industry has been experiencing a progressive movement towards BECx.  In particular, the ASTM E2813 Standard Practice for Building Enclosure Commissioning standard is intended to transform the process of how to incorporate high performance building enclosure design into construction specifications.

BECx provides a variety of benefits to the Owner, Designer, and Contractor, including:

  • The OPR relating to the building enclosure are clearly established and conveyed throughout each phase of the project.
  • A single source reference for dozens of performance testing requirements greatly simplifies the specification writing (and interpreting) process.
  • Better planning and proactive design considerations in the Pre-Design and Design phases will reduce confusion, RFIs, Change Orders, and improper or inadequate deliverables in the construction phase.
  • Supplements to Contractors’ quality control programs via third-party quality assurance observations and Construction Checklists reduce the potential for construction defects.
  • Testing and verification of building enclosure performance characteristics will result in proven performance prior to building turn-over and decreased operating costs via less energy consumption (reference Figure 2).
  • Routine inspection and maintenance plan produced as part of project close-out will provide guidance to building Owner/occupants in long-term maintenance routine.


Recognized as the national leader in building enclosure commissioning, Pie’s BECx program has been proven to provide Owners, Designers, and Contractors a significantly reduced level of risk, exposure to claims and callbacks, and improved building envelope performance by providing expert consultation on the following failure prone enclosure systems:

  • Exterior Waterproofing
  • Air Barriers
  • Thermal Barriers
  • Vapor Retarders

Pie’s expert staff of engineers and specialists has BECx experience on a variety of projects types ranging in size from 20,000 to as large as 947,000 finished square feet.

Pie BECx Project Highlights:

  • Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center Replacement Hospital – Fort Hood, Texas

947,000 square-foot facility including a 6-story patient/bed tower, three clinic buildings, central utility plant, and 3 parking garages

  • 47th Brigade Combat Team Dining Facility – Fort Carson, Colorado

25,900 square-foot dining facility with a seating capacity of 624 in order to feed 1,300 soldiers per meal

  • Solera – Denver, Colorado

12-story, 120-unit apartment building, which was the first LEED Gold-certified, for-lease building in Denver

  • Soldier Family Care Center and Behavioral Health Clinic – Fort Carson, Colorado

2-story, 21,298 square-foot soldier family care center and a 26,298 square-foot behavioral health clinic

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