Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke Reveals City’s Better Buildings Challenge Showcase Project

Thursday, December 15, 2016

On the steps of the Chattanooga Public Library downtown, Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke revealed on Thursday, that the library will serve as Chattanooga’s Showcase Project for the Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge (BBC). As a Showcase Project, the Downtown Public Library will highlight specific ways to achieve sustainability goals and serve as an example to other organizations and cities across the country that want to achieve similar sustainability goals.


“The Public Library is a place where people from all walks of life come to learn and to work towards a brighter future for themselves and their families,” said Mayor Berke. “It seems appropriate then that this building will act as a demonstration of our shared sustainability efforts and values -- a place where organizations can come to learn and work towards a brighter future for our city.”  

The planned upgrades to the downtown library branch -- a four-story, 108,500-square foot building constructed in 1976 -- will save over 800,000 kilowatt hours annually for a total of $60,000 a year in energy cost savings.

“This is city government being responsible for how we spend taxpayer dollars, being committed to a more sustainable community, and leading by example,” said Mayor Berke. “We have invited agencies and organizations from across Chattanooga to join us in taking the Challenge, and I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish when we put our heads together to solve important issues.”

Earlier this year, the City of Chattanooga formally accepted the U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge and since then, has been working with partners like EPB, TVA, and Green|Spaces to develop best practices and resources. The tools available today will help all interested businesses become part of the movement.

Under the challenge, businesses commit to reducing energy use intensity (EUI) by 20 percent by 2023. EPB’s free energy assessment program is a key tool in helping businesses know how much energy they’re using and where they can find savings.

EPB is proud to partner with the City and TVA in promoting the Better Buildings Challenge,” said David Wade, president and CEO of EPB. “The library will be a great showcase for how participating in the Better Buildings Challenge can improve energy utilization in other buildings. The free EPB Energy Check-up our energy experts completed to help the library maximize the value of its energy use is available to all of our customers, and we encourage you to sign up.”

Chattanooga’s BBC Showcase Project at the library upgrades a 40-year-old lighting system, resulting in significant savings, while also enhancing the space. Beginning the first week of 2017, crews will start removing 810 fluorescent bulbs spanning 405 rows of lights and three floors of the library. They will be replaced with 36 energy efficient LED lights per floor.

“The Chattanooga Public Library’s LED lighting project will greatly improve the Main Library by not only lowering our electric bill, but also making the building lighter and brighter for our staff and patrons. The new LED lighting will replace a dated fluorescent system and introduce 21st Century efficiency to the landmark location,” said Corinne Hill, executive director for the Chattanooga Public Library.

The Showcase Project at the library also includes a major HVAC system replacement and controls to increase efficiency. Through both the LED lighting and HVAC upgrade, this project will result in a more than 40 percent reduction in annual energy consumption at the library and savings for Chattanooga taxpayers.

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and Erlanger have also joined the movement, adding a combined 5.5 million square feet to the BBC in Chattanooga. Businesses are encouraged to become part of the movement by joining the challenge and committing to increasing energy efficiency. To get started or find out more information, businesses and individuals should visit

Real Estate Transfers For March 15-21

NOTICE: The Hamilton County Register’s Office did not publish this data. All information in the Register’s Office is public information as set out in T.C.A. 10-7-503. For questions regarding this report, please call at 423 266-2325. GI numbers, listed when street addresses are not available, refer to the location of transactions (book number and page number) ... (click for more)

Teresa Groves Earns Seniors Real Estate Specialist Designation

Teresa Groves, an affiliate broker with Real Estate Partners Chattanooga LLC, has earned the nationally recognized Seniors Real Estate Specialist designation from the Seniors Real Estate Specialist Council of the National Association of Realtors. Officials said, "Working with seniors to meet their housing needs requires an expert understanding of their lifestyle and financial ... (click for more)

Sheriff Hammond Says $4 Million Needed To Put SROs In All Hamilton County Schools

Sheriff Jim Hammond on Thursday night told members of the County School Board that $4 million is needed to provide School Resource Officers for all of the 79 schools. He said currently there are 31 SROs in 29 schools, leaving 50 uncovered. School Board member Rhonda Thurman said she believes the community could come together to provide the necessary funding. "It's something ... (click for more)

Judge Philyaw Denies He Did Not Reappoint Magistrate Because She Was Gay

Juvenile Court Judge Rob Philyaw told a federal jury on Thursday that the fact Elizabeth Gentzler is openly gay had no part in his decision not to reappoint her as a magistrate. "Absolutely not. I have a lot of gay friends, family and acquaintances," he said. However, a court officer at Juvenile Court sided with Ms. Gentzler. Jimmie Cannon said, "Ninety-nine percent ... (click for more)

Avoid Underage Drinking And Other Prom Drama

My high school prom took a dramatic turn when two guys got their tuxedo jackets mixed up. One of them belonged to my date, who kindly offered to keep my wallet in his pocket. That’s the jacket another young man mistakenly grabbed off the back of a chair before heading to an underage drinking party that got shut down by police well after midnight—as kids scattered in every direction.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘In God We Trust …And Protecting Our School Children

On a day that the Tennessee Legislature overwhelmingly approved a bill that would prominently display the words “In God We Trust” in every school building in the state, the Hamilton County School Board gave my boy Bad Little Johnny cause to get a magic market and scribble underneath, “but ‘Everybody Else Is Gonna’ Need A Pistol!’” Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond, who was ... (click for more)