Bagala Window Works Green Building

The Greenest Building – A New Report from the Preservation Green Lab

If you care about preserving historic building and about the environment, here’s some good reading. It’s a new report from the Preservation Green Lab that examines the environmental benefits of building reuse compared with demolition and rebuilding. The conclusion?

When comparing buildings of equivalent size and function, building reuse almost always offers environmental savings over demolition and new construction.

Not that we needed another excuse at BWW to continue lavishing historic windows with TLC, but it’s nice to see laid out so nicely what we’ve always known: Saving historic buildings and protecting the environment go hand in hand.

For more about the report, visit the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s report page.

The Greenest Building (is the one that’s already there)

This is one of the most important reasons that we do what we do:

Geneva, IL Preservation Commission Guide to Windows

If you’re trying to decide whether to repair or replace your windows, the Geneva, Illinois Historic Preservation Commission’s Guide to Windows has some great ideas for you to consider, especially concerning energy efficiency. Here’s an excerpt about the carbon footprint of restored windows:

An important aspect of sustainability and energy efficiency is reduction of the carbon footprint.   If it is feasible to repair older wood windows, is it sustainable to throw them out and replace them with a new product? Removing and disposing a repairable material, manufacturing a new product, and using fossil fuels to transport the product to the site all contribute to the production of green house gas emissions. The inherent “embodied energy” which is lost when disposing of repairable windows should be considered when evaluating window replacement as a way to improve energy efficiency. While replacement offers one solution, the total impact of replacing windows on the environment may outweigh the perceived benefits.