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Westcliff shopping centre made more efficient with AI for HVAC

Context

Westcliff, a Canadian private real estate development and investment company, has a portfolio of more than 10 million square feet of leasable space in Canada and the United States. For this asset, Granby Galleries located in Quebec, the primary project objective was to achieve energy savings while also improving the efficiency of the building’s individual HVAC equipment.

Shopping Centre

  • Location

    Granby - Quebec

  • Controls system

    Automated Logic

  • Total square footage

    509612

  • Total square footage controlled by BrainBox AI

    315000

  • HVAC equipment controlled

    Heat pumps & fresh air handling units (FAHU) at pumps

Process

Transforming a Granby shopping mall into a self-adaptive building

BrainBox AI installed its leading-edge technology into a 509,612 sq. ft. shopping centre in Granby, Quebec, where approximately 60% of the building was controlled, to convert the existing HVAC system into an autonomous one using artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and a set of custom curated algorithms. After a few weeks of data mapping, building analysis and an AI learning period, BrainBox AI was able to establish a strategy unique to the building by enriching its existing data sets with external weather and tariff structure data, resulting in an impressive reduction in asset and equipment runtimes as well as energy consumption from HVAC operations.


Having a small building management team, BrainBox AI engineers and project managers also offered significant value by delivering ongoing client support and acting as an extension of the client’s team. 

Achieving significant electricity and gas savings

Electricity

-21%

Electricity savings on HVAC equipment

Electricity (kWh)

-205,214

Electricity savings on HVAC equipment

Average runtime reduction by equipment type

  • Supply fan runtime

    -33.5%

  • Heating stage runtime

    -62%

  • Cooling stage runtime

    -5%

  • Reheat stages runtime

    -30%

  • Global reheat utilisation

    -78%

  • Overall fan runtime

    -61%

  • Heating modulation runtime

    -91%

  • Heating state runtime

    -81%

Results

This resulted in electricity savings on HVAC equipment of 205,214 kWh (21%) after a year of operation with BrainBox AI. Total monetary savings for the year amounted to 19,249 CAD, significantly reducing the shopping centre’s operating expenses and improving its net operating income. 

Aligned with the clients primary goals, BrainBox AI’s technology helped improve operational efficiency by optimising the usage of certain HVAC equipment autonomously, the result of which was an average reduction in equipment runtime of 55% (see table for breakdown per piece of equipment). BrainBox AI was able to achieve these savings and reduction in equipment runtime while avoiding any fluctuations in average zone temperature* (average temperature of 69 °F with BrainBox AI,versus 68.9°F without BrainBox AI.)

The success story of this shopping centre is a prime example that building efficiency can be easily and quickly achieved with smart HVAC  technology. At BrainBox AI, we are proud to have helped the client in realising these great results.

 

*Based on a 1-week assessment in April 2021