Arrowhead Juvenile Correctional Facility – Duluth, MN

Building Science and Forensics


Arrowhead Juvenile Correctional Facility – Duluth, Minnesota

Forensic Investigation and Energy Modeling

After completing a Facility & Site Asset Management Program (FSAM) for the Arrowhead Juvenile Correctional Facility in Duluth, Minnesota, CR-BPS was hired to complete a follow-up forensic investigation and an energy model of the same facility. The investigation revealed the necessity to further inspect the exterior enclosure’s ability to keep rain-driven bulk water from saturating the exterior finish insulation system and the concrete masonry unit support system. As a result, CR-BPS performed moisture, thermography, and air bypass analysis testing, confirming that the integrity of the exterior enclosure was compromised due to the lack of a drainage system at the exterior wall surface and air control layer.

Because the thermal control layer, the rooftop air handling units, and the roofing were up for renewal, the analysis provided the Juvenile Correctional Facility with an opportunity to improve the thermal, bulk water, and air control layers of the building’s exterior shell. The energy model provided various design solutions to improve the efficiency of the building’s envelope, which could be compared side-by-side on the basis of financial return, energy performance, and building durability/lifespan. The baseline for comparison was an energy model of the building’s existing conditions (i.e. existing walls, roofs, windows, mechanical, electrical systems). This baseline energy model was then calibrated with the actual utility consumption and costs data discovered in the FSAM.

After the existing conditions baseline energy model was complete, various scenarios of energy conservation opportunities were modeled–including a variety of building envelope options–and then evaluated in terms of cost, payback, energy performance, durability, and sizing. The energy modeling provided financial, energy, and lifespan information needed to inform decision-making for capital projects in the immediate and near future.

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